Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Is Splenda splended?

My short answer: No.

Why is Splenda less than splendid?  First, chlorine.  Second, no long-term studies of the side effects of Splenda in humans.

To add confusion to the shopping list, the FDA issued a press release asserting that sucralose (Splenda) is "made from sugar."

What is Splenda?  It is not sugar...it is a synthetic compound discovered in 1976 by British scientists researching a new pesticide.  The Splenda molecule is comprised of sucrose (sugar) — except that three of the hydroxyl groups in the molecule have been replaced by three chlorine atoms. 

Chlorinated sugar...yum. 

"While some industry experts claim the molecule is similar to table salt or sugar, other independent researchers say it has more in common with pesticides. That’s because the bonds holding the carbon and chlorine atoms together are more characteristic of a chlorocarbon than a salt — and most pesticides are chlorocarbons.

Once it gets to the gut, sucralose goes largely unrecognized in the body as food — that’s why it has no calories. The majority of people don’t absorb a significant amount of Splenda in their small intestine — about 15% by some accounts," Marcelle Pick.

There have not been long-term studies on Splenda's health effects.  The good news is that we can sit on the side lines and choose out of this public health experiment.

http://www.womentowomen.com/healthyweight/splenda.aspx

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Music

It is late today so I will say a lot without many words. 

Music can heal, shift energy, inspire, define -- it brings an edge to my days. 

I feel like sharing tunes today.  The word 'Yes' has a certain power to it too, right?

Snow Patrol - Just Say Yes

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Chicken and Vegetables in a White Wine Sauce

This recipe was easy to prepare and completely rewarding.  My husband said it is officially one of our "go-to" meals.  My goal next time is to make it 60% vegetables and 40% protein. 

My favorite things about it:
  • relatively lowfat
  • tastes great with many alkaline vegetables
  • high fiber
  • one skillet meal (i.e., great week night meal)
Chicken and Vegetables in a White Wine Sauce
Ingredients
½ cup all-purpose flour
¼ tsp each of dried basil, parsley, oregano, thyme, salt, and pepper
4 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves (2 chicken breasts total)
2 tbsp. olive oil
1 tbsp. butter
4 cups bite size vegetables (baby bella mushrooms, broccoli florets, asparagus tips, zucchini)
1 (14 oz.) can quartered artichoke hearts, drained
1/2 cup dry white wine
1/2 cup chicken broth
Grated Parmesan cheese, for serving
Minced fresh parsley, for serving

Directions:
In a pie plate or shallow dish, combine the flour, dried herbs, salt and pepper and stir with a fork to blend. Reserve 1 tablespoon of the flour mixture. Using tongs, coat the chicken breast halves in the flour mixture, shaking off the excess.

Heat the olive oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add the chicken to the pan and cook until golden brown and cooked through, about 8-10 minutes, turning halfway through cooking. Remove the chicken to a plate; cover and keep warm.

Add the butter to the pan and warm until melted. Add the vegetables and artichokes to the pan and cook until the vegetables are tender, about 5 minutes.

In a liquid measuring cup, combine the white wine, chicken broth, and reserved tablespoon of flour; whisk until smooth. Add the mixture to the skillet, cooking until it is warm and slightly thickened. Return the chicken to the pan to warm through and cover with sauce. Serve the chicken with sauce spooned over the top, and garnish with grated Parmesan and fresh parsley as desired.

Adapted from Annies-Eats.com

New Favorite Things

I fell HARD for these two things in the last week: cell food and cucumbers.

CELLFOOD
Cellfood is the world's #1 selling oxygen + nutrient supplement.  It contains 78 minerals, 34 enzymes, and 17 amino acids. Also, cellfood utilizes a proprietary water-splitting technology that provides a powerful stream of bio-available oxygen plus 129 nutrients directly to the cells.

Most importantly...it helps detoxify the body and balance pH. It is so easy to use -- just add a few drops to your water.



CUCUMBERS
Cucumbers contain most of the vitamins you need every day!  Just one cucumber contains Vitamin B1, Vitamin B2, Vitamin B3, Vitamin B5, Vitamin B6, Folic Acid, Vitamin C, Calcium, Iron, Magnesium, Phosphorus, Potassium and Zinc.  They are alkaline too to support your pH balance.

My new favorite snack list has expanded: raisins, almonds, and cucumbers.

Over 20 years ago, my best friend Katie taught me how to spruce up vegetables with just a few spices and sauces.  I think of her every time I eat my cucumbers especially with organic ranch and a little cajun seasoning.  Seriously good!  Thanks Katie -

Monday, August 2, 2010

Lisa finishes radiation!

I am so proud of my sister for plowing through six weeks of radiation treatments.  She has maintained such a positive attitude throughout the entire process. 

She traveled 240 miles round trip every day to her treatments and crossed two mountain passes.  Bondurant, WY to Idaho Falls, ID. 

I wanted to be with her every day.

Tomorrow is the start of healing and relaxing...her body has been mammogrammed, poked, cut, biopsied, radiated (feels like a sun burn), scanned...

Tomorrow her gift is to heal and feel good.  You are a champ big Sis.  Heal well.

Lisa's Blog

Sunday, August 1, 2010

NutraSweet - Day 3

We could spend one whole post on "how to file a complaint against NutraSweet" -- but the most simple and empowering choice is to check the label for aspartame and to not consume it.  Your purchasing dollars have power. 

Here is the short list of NutraSweet products: Trident, Diet Pepsi, Diet Coke, Diet Dr. Pepper, Crystal Lite, Extra Gum, Diet Iced Tea, Diet Snapple, Starbucks sugar-free syrups, many yogurts, nutritional bars, sugar-free cocoa, some protein powders...the list is long and growing!

On aspartame.com there is a discussion on the third byproduct of aspartame: methanol.  They assert that, "the body handles methanol the same whether it comes from juice or from aspartame sweetened food.  It is absorbed in the small intestine and immediately converted to water and carbon dioxide."  If I could prove them wrong in court I'd be a millionaire, right?

Here is some interesting information:
  • Quick math implies that every 12 ounce can of diet soda contains 10-18 mg of methanol (180 mg of aspartame with methanol contributing ~10%). 
  • Fruits and fruit juices contain ethanol, pectin, folic acid, niacin, vitamin C, and B complex vitamins which naturally detoxify the methanol.  Ethanol is the standard emergency room treatment for methanol poisoning.
  • Without ethanol and pectin, methanol metabolizes into formaldehyde and formic acid.
  • Formaldehyde and formic acid are highly toxic and known carcinogens.  Symptoms may include: headaches, dizziness, memory lapses, vision problems. 
  • An EPA assessment of methanol states that methanol "is considered a cumulative poison due to the low rate of excretion once it is absorbed. In the body, methanol is oxidized to formaldehyde and formic acid; both of these metabolites are toxic."
If anything, use this information to initiate your own research and draw your own conclusions. 

Woodrow C. Monte, Ph.D., R.D., "Aspartame: Methanol and the Public Health," Journal of Applied Nutrition, 36 (1): 42-53.