I thought about not posting a blog this month. The month of May has been crazy busy. The year-end for a high school teacher is chaos; grades and systems and deadlines, students feeling pressured and emotionally challenged. A good friend has been in the hospital twice. Added to the brain-strain, I am preparing for my first ever trip to London. My middle daughter lives there and hopefully will act as my travel guide (no pressure) on this summer adventure. After that, I am off to my regular summer spot with my youngest daughter in Colorado.
What is here is a clip of one of my “Spring into May” hikes and two healthy video clips. The first is a short clip from the Mayo Clinic with Tips for dining out and the second is a long video from Zonia.com with tons of Immunity information for you.
1. Hike: Lee Canyon, Las Vegas May 13, 2023
2. Mayo Clinic: 7 tips Dining out video click the link and go then come back.
3. Zonia.com: The Truth About Your Immunity And Our Broken Medical Systemimportant health information click the link and go then come back.
At Least, three longtime friends passed this month. One in his 70’s, one in his 80’s, and one in his 90’s. Richard W., Dave P., and Coach O. were all Elders in my life. (while writing this, I got news of 2 more friends passing).
In the ancient tradition, each showed me their Elderhood wisdom, born of experience and battling through life’s challenges. They were guides to all who searched out their wisdom. Such guides are always needed. We, as legacy creations, must be the Elders for those to come. It is an ancient tradition and must be followed if we are to survive. As we have grown from their guidance, the task falls to us. We are all connected, like the mycelium of the forest. We know our ancestors are fully present in every cell of our body. Let us invite them to our life experiences.
Food Emersion and Survival
Previously, I said that the only reason for not eating meat is a moral or ethical conviction, a reverence for life. It is a strong reason if you believe that these are sentient beings. More science now supports no meat. In my current eating program, the why may be as important as the what. It started as a 10 days Vegan Emersion Program from Food Revolution. My inspiration was a friend who wanted to be vegan for the health benefits. She has a heart valve replacement pending and wants to be in best health she can be for that procedure. It has been over a month with no meat or dairy. She claims more energy and I had my first-morning run (jog) in more than 20 years on Saturday. We have morphed a little from the strict definition of a vegan menu to a Whole Food Plant Based (WFPB) plan. The difference is minimal.
Whether science is chasing trends or trend is following science; every day there is more information coming out about the benefits of the WFPB diet. Google it and see. If you give this diet a try for a meal or a day, you will be better for not partaking in the Standard American Diet (SAD). I hoped to instantly lose weight on the 10-day emersion plan. I did not lose weight because I made some mistakes. I did not monitor my consumption which for me always means overconsumption. If one is good; ten is better. Also, I did not run nutrient information. As we tried new recipes, lack of planning, led to a protein shortage in my diet. This produced some intense sugar cravings which I accommodated. There is a science to back these actions and feelings of mine. The situation is correctable. Processes are happening in the body that produces these effects. EVERYDAY HEALTH AND GOOGLE describe protein traveling through the small intestine encouraging the production of the hormone CCK and others that are responsible for decreases in appetite for carbohydrates and sugar. The lack of protein will lower the production of these hormones and produce the cravings. My solution is to add a Plant-based protein powder to my diet, at least until I get my consumption act together.
The Rich Roll Podcast interview with Dr. Zach Bush (#5) is really good. The title is The Future Human and Planetary Health; go here 👉🏾http://bit.ly/richroll751then go to site. These well-educated and brilliant men talk about everything we see, feel, and hope for.
As another school comes to an end, I want to be pointed in the right direction. The website https://www.randomactsofkindness.org/ helps me with this. In late May, I am making my first flight to the UK. My middle daughter has lived there my years and I am going to see what is the attraction. Until next time, Good day.
A student of mine came to class late. She had a note from her counselor. She is trying to be a good person but regularly gets off track. She smelled of tobacco smoke. I thanked her for attending my class this day and suggested she should not be a smoker. The response was at the core of flawed thinking. She said, ” I’m a gown ass woman, I can do what I want.” As I have learned with age, the body and spirit are one and separate at the same time. Youthful people, in general, are very social but they do not recognize nor understand the collective spirit. Each of us shares the burden and success of each individual. We share health and sickness. We share the good feeling and the pain.
I am reminded of a paragraph from the book No Mud, No Lotus by Thich Nhat Hahn (the Vietnamese Buddhist monk). “There are many people who have enormous suffering, overwhelming suffering, and they don’t know how to end this suffering. For many people, this suffering starts at a very young age. Why don’t schools teach us how to manage to suffer? If your suffering is so great, you can’t concentrate, you can’t study, and you can’t focus. The suffering of each of us affects others. The more we can teach each other about the art of suffering well, the less suffering there will be in the world overall and the more happiness.”
I want to tell you that this is starting to happen in public schools, some courses include mindfulness in their curriculum. This action is a result of the stress and suffering from the pandemic. That is a good action to come out of the isolation period.
THE SRING BREAK
My favorite beach and just off my favorite beach
My, always essential, spring break had me on the Gulf of California, in the Guaymas/San Carlos area of Mexico. I went on a boat fishing for a lunchtime meal. I went snorkeling in Aquarium Bay, and hiking to a secluded lagoon. birding at a protected estuary, swimming at Dolphin Beach, and sitting on the beach at a fishing village. I ate loads of fish meals as it is a commercial fishing area. This spring break was a renewal of my spirit and I am re-energizing.
After eating my way through this area of Mexico, I am now trying to clean up my dietary habits. My friend and I are in the middle of a 10-day vegan immersion program from Plant Pure Communities. We are doing well in their program. I think I will keep to this for my health and longevity. There is a new movie from the Campbell Clan, From Food to Freedom, https://plantpurecommunities.org/ Watch for free.
I started “no meat” in Mexico. Yes, this is a delicious veggie sandwich; 900 miles south of the border.
Buddhist monk says these 5 morning routines will help you start your day better
Nick Keomahaavong, a Theravada Buddhist monk has a routine he says will help us have a little stillness and mind power in our day.
Make your bed: it will start your day with a positive habit and help organize your mind.
Chanting and Meditation: all the thoughts and stories we allow in our brain can be release to start clean.
Do an act of generosity: these is to release one from greed and set one on a positive path.
Do chores: paying attention to tasks at grounds one in the earth and helps cultivate mindfulness practice.
Limit your dinner: the best way to prepare for the morning is to start the day before.
IN February, here in Las Vegas, it is high desert winter. It is characterized by cold nights and cool windy days. Night time temperatures are in the 30’s with day time highs generally in the 50’s. I had two outdoor Saturday adventures. That is, first a climb of Lone Mountain and second a drive/hike that included Rodgers Hot Springs and the Valley of Fire State Park.
Lone Mountain is in the sea of suburban roof tops near the north west corner of Vegas. It has a two mile circular trail around the edges of the mountain. The kicker is a near vertical trail to the summit. Up 600 to 3000 feet. At the summit you get a 360 degree view of everything everywhere.
The view from the Summit
The second adventure was a road trip. First stop was Rogers Hot Springs
Rodgers Hot Springs is inside Lake Mead Recreation area. It is a drive-up spot. It has rest rooms and covered picnic areas. The water temperature is 86 degrees year round. It makes a great break spot. I took a friend on this day trip so we had a break here. We had an hour canyon exploring walk. It made the trip into Valley of Fire State park even better.
Lake Mead as seen from Rodgers Hot Springs hike.
The Valley of Fire does not seemed to be named for the dessert heat but rather for its special red rock formations which are way more expansive than the popular Red Rock Canyon miles the the south west. It is a spectacular drive with hiking areas everywhere requiring a return trip. We completely enjoyed this trip. Here just couple of the photos:
Next: FEET, FORKS, AND FINGERS
This is how Dr. David Katz relates to the sky rocketing health issues in America and around the world. He is referencing what is well known to all of us. Feet refers to all people needing regular exercise or activity. Forks is about the importance of what we eat to run our bodies. Fingers is the importance of not smoking. He recognizes and is aware that most people know this, but the issues still exist. He says that the gap between what people know and what people do is the cause of 80% of disease and is preventable. This 80% of disease is what are called lifestyle related diseases. They are the biggies, most heart disease, most cancers, type II diabetes, and Alzheimer’s disease (the most common type of dementia). Dr. Katz says that our zip code not our genetic code is the more important factor in determining our longevity and health span. That is why they are described as lifestyle diseases. In an early career talk he highlighted 6 factors of health for longevity: 1. diet 2. exercise/activity 3. not smoking 4.sleep 5. stress 6. social factors/love.
These 6 things sound a great deal like the Blue Zone formula. I believe this road less traveled must be traveled for us the be healthy. To get motivation watch the 2017 Documentary What the Health again or maybe for the first time. It is on Netflix and other media too.
I received a gift book from my son; The Blue Zone American Kitchen. It is a coffee table style book with lots of good pictures. Besides good recipes, it is a historical account of early American ethic group diet before their eating was corrupted or lost. If you’d like to learn some cool longevity facts listen or watch Rich Rolls interview with Blue Zones Dan Buettner just below.
Finally, This month, a real world problem. I continue my concern with pollution and toxins in our environment. We all heard or read about the mess in New Palestine, Ohio. Of course in our country, it is now a political issue. It should be a right to life issue. Some people will get sick and die. What a mess. With that said, this week (2/23) in The Guardian, a liberal news paper in the UK, there was an article about “forever toxins”. It has map showing the areas in Europe and the UK that are polluted with PFAS. PFAS stands for per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances, it’s an umbrella term for a family of about 12,000 chemicals that are prized for their indestructible and non-stick properties. They are toxic. The mapped areas are massive. The “forever toxins” are detected in the air, water, soils, sediments, and rain. Yes, this life is terminal, but must we speed up the process and our own demies.
January opens with a personal brief evaluation and a resolution to improve. January ends with glossing over of that resolution or a justification so I can live with my failure, again this year. Why do we go through this kind of thinking? It is bad and does not reinforce good thinking or good health habits. I prefer goal setting; short and long-term goals which can grow and adjust with me. There is no failure.
December found me in the chill of Colorado with my family. A lucky flight in the middle of flight cancelations and a myriad of snafus put me in the Siberian weather front. It was -23 degrees before the wind chill was tagged on. It still was a joyful reunion.
It was warm and homey inside with lots of fun and laughter and I was able to reinforce my personal energy. I finally finished reading, “Ageless. The New Science of Getting Older Without Getting Old” by Andrew Steele. This new field of studying the aging process is called Biogerontology. The book took a long time for me to read as it was at the edge of technical knowledge. Each of the medical breakthroughs that are on the horizon was discussed. My goal or task and yours is to live long enough to reap the benefits of this new and emerging medical study area. The science this there.
Chapter 10 of the book is Titled “How to Live Long Enough to Live Even Longer”. It is turning to the basic rules of good health to increase your health span to match your life expectancy until scientific breakthroughs can be made safe for everyone.
Here are Andrew Steele’s familiar suggestions.
Don’t eat too much
Get some exercise
Get seven to eight hours of sleep
Get vaccinated and wash your hands
Take care of your teeth
Monitor your heart rate and blood pressure
Don’t bother with supplements
Don’t bother with longevity drugs-yet
Be a Woman: this improves your life expectancy by about 5 years.
I found a good article in “Livestrong” titled, “7 Things Physical Therapists Do Every Day for Healthy Aging”
Make Resistance Training a Regular Thing: this will reduce age-related muscle loss. 30 to 60 minutes per week.
Put Protein First: every meal, every source, helps maintain muscle and avoid age-related weight gain.
Keep Up With Cardio: aerobic exercise keeps your heart and lungs functioning. 150 minutes a week.
Say Yes to Yoga: strong, flexible, balance to avoid falls.
Take a walk after Dinner: improve digestion.
Get Enough Sleep: benefits body and brain recovery.
Find a Stress Reliever That Works: Walking, meditating, and yoga can all be helpful.
That is plenty of Back to Basics information here for you and me to move forward. There is no failure. Today is a new day.
I really liked this research:On January 4, a randomized study by the University of Colorado Boulder revealed that community gardening could bring great health results. By increasing fiber intake and physical activity, gardening can decrease cancer and chronic disease risk while also benefiting mental health by minimizing stress and anxiety.
Please click and watch this 13-minute YouTube. It is meaningful.