Sunday, September 30, 2012

A Garden Can Be Your Financial Life Boat

I heard a news commentator today say that more than 37 million Americans can't find full time work.

They're struggling, and it doesn't appear that there's any solution in site at the national level. We owe too much money. On paper, we're fiscally bankrupt.

If people haven't read about it, they feel it. We are living in a time of inevitable transition, and in our guts we know we're in for a rocky ride.

But if we step outside and look around, we know that our true equity isn't on paper. It's us, and our ability to be resourceful.

If we think of what we really need, it's good food, and that can be as close as our own backyards. You can grow food in an area about the size of the bed of a pick-up truck.

For instance, I think of Swiss chard, those elephant-ear sized greens from the spinach family, but surprising pack much more nutrients. It's easy to grow, and you can cook it up in soups or pasta sauces, or saute' it in a pan along with some onions and garlic. Once it gets to your stomach, it can begin processing all that "medicine" to deliver a dose of health to your cells.(It can even survive into the winter if you cover it!)

I use this space to write about the abundance of nutrients available in fruits, vegetables, nuts and grains because I've seen the difference good food can make in a variety of health conditions. In these days of concerns over the future of health care in this country, it should be of some comfort to know that we can access a veritable pharmacy in a garden.

Saturday, September 8, 2012

An Encore for Fiber

Barring any medical conditions that are aggravated by eating lots of fiber, most people would probably find that it's a silver bullet for reducing sugar cravings, becoming healthier, and, yes, losing weight.

Food journals are useful for tracking your eating patterns, just like you would track your spending. But at the end of the day, the result is the same surprise at how much you are eating ~ or spending.

But if you're focusing on fiber, all you need is to add. Basically you're just counting up the fiber grams, veritable deposits in your physical health account.

You can Google the fiber grams for various fruits, vegetables and nuts, but to simplify it for you, a 1/2 cup serving for most of them contains about 3 - 4 grams.

But if you set a goal to eat 35 to 40 grams of fiber every day, you really have to eat plenty of good stuff to reach that amount. You can't eat junk because there's little fiber in processed foods. Not only that, you WON"T eat junk if you're lasered in on getting enough fiber because you won't have enough room in your tummy!

What's not to like about that approach?