Monday, November 22, 2010

[Blog] Thanksgiving Feast

Raw Pumpkin "Cheesecake" Pie

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Sunday, November 21, 2010

[Blog] Workout Counting

 I designed a fitness system for myself based on the following:

I've tried a lot of fitness plans in the past, but was never able to keep the motivation up.

I am constantly wanting to go back to the kitchen and grab another apple.  My husband pointed out this is probably caused by two things: cravings for something sweet, and lack of exercise.

I am a writer and artist, and I spend a lot of time reading as well.  This means there is nothing in my daily routine that forces me to exercise.

I get bored with exercise plans easily.

The Plan's Inspiration

This idea started with the concept that I'd eat less apples if I had to work a little bit for them. I decided that if I did one hundred crunches for every half of an apple that I ate, it would be reasonable.  But after trying that, I figured, why stop there?

Hunger vs. Cravings

This plan is good for combating cravings.
Hunger is when you're weak and tired.
Cravings are when you desire chemical reactions in your gut or brain to make you feel good, relieve stress, or when parasites in your gut are sending you messages through your spine that make you want to eat unhealthy foods.
Sometimes I think I'm hungry because I feel weak, but actually I just need exercise. Staying stationary for long periods of time will make you feel weak and tired.


I often give in to my cravings and then sit there feeling guilty about it.  That guilt builds up over time and eventually the self-torture makes you snap and you stop caring abut whether or not your actions are healthy.  Since I began this plan, I've stopped feeling guilt about what I eat entirely.

The Plan

The concept is that every non-vegetable has a number assigned to it that is a multiple of 20.  The numbers are higher for less healthy things, or highly sweet things, or things I simply crave a lot of.  The number represents interchangeable exercises that can be decided at the time.  One crunch, or one-sit-up or one leg-lift are all worth "one" even if the difficulty of the crunch is increased.  This is so that I don't have to change the numbers as I get stronger, and so I can do harder crunches or leg-lifts if I have more energy, or do the easiest ones if I'm tired without stepping outside of the plan and feeling like I've failed.  Push-ups are worth five (either from the knees or the feet.)


Because I get bored easily, I try and do as many variations as possible.  This not only keeps me interested, but it's more effective as well. I have a short article about crunches variations here.

And the actual numbers I've come up with are as follows:

An orange20
A date20
Two figs20
Three raisins20
A grapefruit20
An avocado20
A spoonful of Almond butter40
A quarter package of seed chips40
A handful of pistachios40
A kiwi40
A banana60
A raw bar80
Half of an apple100
Half a mango100
A fruit ball120
Raw Potluck Meal160

Some notes:

I don't count the almond butter if it's on celery, since that's the only way I'll eat celery, unless it's in a green drink.
I do the full number even if I'm sharing with my husband, or not finishing until later.
I count up all the things individually that go into a raw dessert and do them before I have my first serving of the dessert, even if I'm splitting it with my husband and not finishing it until the following night.

 I started this plan on September 14th 2010, and I'm writing this on September 22nd.  I'm already noticing a difference in how toned my stomach is.  I've done a lot of exercise before, but never have I built muscle this fast.  Based on what I've read, an all-raw diet causes faster muscle gain due tot he influx of live enzymes which are amino acids, which build proteins. You can read my article about protein on a raw diet for more information on that topic as well as an interesting video.

I have a lot more energy from this plan than anything else I've tried.  Because I generally eat four to seven times during the day, I end up exercising four to seven times.  And once I've started exercising, the hard part is already over: I started.  It's getting up the resolve to get onto the mat and start that takes so much will power for me.  When I have the motivation of wanting to eat behind it, it's so much easier.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

[Article] Calories

Raederle Phoenix, 2004 to 2011
Click To Open In New Window: Click Again To View Full Size

Eat less, exercise more.

That's what they keep telling you. Have you tried it? Did it work for you?

Or were you simply left starving, depleted, tired, or possibly even gained weight?

Anyone who has tried to lose weight using the age-old formula of "eat less, exercise more," is aware that this doesn't work. Even if you successfully lose weight, that's all that you gain. You don't get more energetic, happy, or cure the chronic issues that pain you. If anything, you create more problems.

Eating less and exercising more is intended to create a calorie deficit, where the body is using up more than it's taking in.

As Julia Ross writes: "The idea is to coerce your body into burning stored fat, but for many people low-calorie dieting ends up burning them out long before the fat is gone. This is not because of a lack of self-control or willpower. It happens because the very fundamentals of low-calorie dieting are downright wrong.

"For people trying to lose weight by cutting calories, food suddenly becomes the enemy instead of a means to genuine health. Hunger pangs become a sign of success instead of a sign the body is craving nourishment. This kind of twisted reality - a world where we desire starvation to maintain a healthy weight - is contributing to modern disease and misery."

There is much more going on when you eat than calorie intake. There are sensations. The simple act of crunching is releasing endorphins in the brain that cause you to feel less stress. Sugars are absorbed directly through the roof of your mouth and go into your brain -- which is why it is so very important that they are not refined, man-made garbage sugars. The flavor indicates to your mind how much nutrition it is getting. Complex flavors indicate to your body that you're getting the nutrition that you need, making you feel like you're eating what you need. If it turns out that this complex flavor isn't actually satisfying the nutrient deficit you'll continue to crave more and more of it.

And that's only the tip of the iceberg of all the things going on when you eat. Tiny micro-organisms in your intestines often cause people crave things that are bad for them so that they -- the parasites -- can thrive. Many people's horrendous and insatiable cravings are caused by parasites who eat most of the food, leaving you empty and tired even after eating a nutrient-dense meal.

Millions of cells are being created every hour. What will they be made out of if you're starving yourself?

And worse yet, if you're working out more then you'll need plenty of nutrition in order to build muscle. The nutrition will be pulled out of your teeth, your bones, your eyes, your stores of energy, out of your brain in an attempt to rebuild stronger muscles as you pull and stretch and strain them during your work outs.

Exercising your muscles is the process of tearing and breaking down your muscle. Recovery time is the amount of time it takes your body to rebuild that muscle stronger than before. The soreness you feel after a workout is how much you've torn up those muscles. How will you rebuild better muscles when you're basing your diet on calories?

Calories are about as meaning as it gets in the world of nutrition, diet, exercise, fitness, and food. They are an obsolete tool, and a waste of your time.

If you've been decieved by something such as Weight Watchers, then please read this article which expounds upon calories and why they are neutral to your weight and health.

I can tell you personally, when I lost weight (30 pounds in one month), it was without adding any exercise to my life, and I didn't pay attention to how many calories I consumed. All I did was cut the poisons I was eating out of my diet.

Today, I'm aiming to get my diet to be balance as the food pyramid below indicates. I can't say I've yet succeeded. I still don't reach eight servings of vegetables everyday because I don't like most vegetables. I play a game of continually finding a new way to hide them in my food. If you don't like vegetables, you may want to check out this guacamole recipe I designed for myself to hide vegetables I dislike within.

The Raw Food Pyramid
for 100% Raw Foodists or for detoxing

Created by Raederle Phoenix

Click To View Fullsize

I didn't recover from a lifetime of continual illness, chronic stomachaches, endless fatigue, depression, serious sleep disorders, skin problems, and a laundry list of conditions by counting calories.

It's as I said in my poem:

You don't have to go hungry.
Natural items come in sundry.
Leave the calorie quandary,
Enter the quantity of quality,

That comes with internal harmony.
You are what you eat.
Would you like to be concrete?
Or would you rather be a bloom?
Wouldn't you like a habitable womb?


Saturday, November 13, 2010

[Recipe] Guacamole

Food Blog

I have a lot of trouble getting enough vegetables in to me. Raw or not, I've never been much for vegetables in general. It's not nearly as difficult to give up a food you like as it is to make yourself eat something you don't like. I've learned this lesson ten times over.

So how could I make myself enjoy vegetables? Since I've gone raw and gotten into inventing and discovering new foods, I've found a dozen different ways to sneak vegetables into my food without making the dish less enjoyable. The following recipe is designed so that you can hide a raw vegetable you dislike in the guacamole and never notice it's there.

For me, I jumped my largest hurdle yet. I added an entire package of sprouts to this and couldn't taste that they were there at all. This was huge for me. The smell and taste of virtually any sprout makes me feel sick on the spot, and always has. But now I can eat them and enjoy the meal.

If you have a vegetable you really can stand, but know you need (Kale, Cabbage, Chard, Bok Choy, Nori, etc.) then you may find this just as amazing as I did. If you're not struggling with getting half of your diet to be vegetables, then perhaps you don't need to try and hide anything in this and can just use one of the many vegetables you like.


Pay close attention to the directions. Using these ingredients may not have as good as a results as mine if you throw them together in any random haphazard way.
Four lemons with peels and seeds entirely removed
Eight cloves of garlic
Three hot peppers, with seeds included (more or less, to taste.)
One large onion, or two or three small onions
Three avocados
One stalk of basil
Two stalks of favorite herb (Dill, Cilantro, Oregano, Rosemary, etc)
Two heirloom tomatoes
Four tomatillos
Two large bell peppers, or four to six small ones
Five spoonfuls of soaked seeds
Chosen vegetable to disguise (about three cups worth)


Peel the lemons and cut them into sections. Be careful to get out every single seed. If you have a citrus juicer you can use that to remove the seeds. Although, I use all the lemon pulp in mine.

Put the lemons into the food processor first and blend them until they are more like "lemon glop" rather than "lemon chunks."

The lemons are very important because they are what keep the avocado (perhaps with the help of the onion) from browning. For each avocado, use one lemon, or four lemons per three avocados.

Peel the garlic and chop into fairly small chunks. Add them along with the lemon and blend. Not until it's entirely smooth, but until all the pieces are fairly tiny.

Wash your hot peppers and cut off the tops. Cut them into large sections. Test with your tongue how hot they are. Depending on personal taste you may want to use more three hot peppers. The given recipe above comes out moderately hot. If you have a sensitive tongue to spicy foods, perhaps one or two hot peppers will be plenty.

Put in the hot pepper pieces and blend for a few seconds to get them into very small bits.


Peel the onion. You may want to run it under water for a moment so it doesn't burn your eyes terribly, if you're sensitive to onions. (Something about the water keeps the onion vapors from attracting to the moisture in the eyes.)

Put half the onion in the food processor. Leave the other half for a bit later.

Sunflower Sprouts

Take the vegetable you want to disguise and add half of its washed bulk to the food processor. Blend for a couple of seconds.


Peel and pit the avocados. Test small portions of the avocado. Add any parts that are slightly under-ripe or over-ripe into the food processor. Leave the pristine-perfect parts of avocado for a bit later.


Take your (washed) herb stalks (including the Basil) and take the leaves off the stem (unless it's a very soft-stem herb). Add a little more than half of the herbs to the food processor. Set aside the rest with the avocado, disguised vegetable and onion.


Peel the tomatillos and wash them along with the heirloom tomatoes. Cut them open and remove the center-top area where there is hard white fiber. Remove any spoiled parts. Any parts that are under-ripe, add to the food processor. Leave about half (or whatever is left) with the avocado, disguised vegetable, onion and herb leaves.

Heirloom Tomatoes

Wash your bell peppers and cut off their tops. Cut them in large pieces and throw about half of them into the food processor. If any parts of shriveled, make sure those parts go in rather than waiting beside your half onion, disguised vegetable, avocado, leaf herbs, tomatoes and tomatillos.

Bell Peppers

Add your five spoonfuls of soaked seeds. Also feel free to throw in a little spirulina algae, nori, or some other nutritional additive in small quantity.

Black Sesame Seeds

Blend all the ingredients (already) in the food processor for five to fifteen seconds. Everything should be in very small pieces, but not entirely mush. Add the rest of your herbs and "vegetable to disguise" and a little more onion and pepper and blend a few more seconds.

Photo By Raederle

Chop the remaining ingredients into small chunks and stir into the blended mass from your food processor.

Sides, Serving, Adjusting & Eating

Photo By Raederle

Eat on top of butter-leaf or romaine lettuce.

Photo By Raederle

You can add cranberries, blackberries or pomegranate over the top (or anything else that floats your boat of course).

Photo By Raederle

You can use a "seed crust" as a base.

Photo By Raederle

Don't forget to include spinach, lettuce, cabbage or another leafy green while eating your guacamole. It's important to get plenty of roughage. (Because raw leafy green stuff should be a major part of all of our diets, regardless of whether or not we choose to be vegan, or raw, or whatever. Green leafy things are indisputable.)

Photo By Raederle

If you choose to dip seed chips in your guacamole, or use any dehydrated snack along with it, remember to drink plenty of water. The body is mostly water. It needs to be mostly water to function. Water, water, water!

Photo By Raederle

If your mix didn't come out as spicy as you want, stir in a little cayenne pepper or chili powder. If it came out too spicy, chop up an additional bell pepper, tomatillo and heirloom tomato and stir them in.

Photo By Raederle

Thanks For Reading!

For more of my recipes, click here.

The photos for the ingredients are not photos taken by me. The photos of the finished products are photos I took of dishes I made and ate (and enjoyed) after photographing.

If you have any questions, feel free to contact me.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

[Article] Canola Oil & MSG/GMO

The MSG & Canola Oil Song

MSG is proven to cause brain damage over time.

Here is a good video reference which I found very informative: Dr. Russel Blaylock discusses how our food today is adulterated with excitotoxins.

Always contain MSG:

(E 620)
Glutamic acid
(E 620)
Monosodium glutamate
(E 621)
Monopotassium glutamate
(E 622)
Calcium glutamate
(E 623)
Monoammonium glutamate (E 624)
Magnesium glutamate
(E 625)
Natrium glutamate (natrium is Latin/German for sodium)
Calcium caseinate
Sodium caseinate
Textured protein
anything "hydrolyzed"
any "hydrolyzed ... protein"
Yeast nutrient
Yeast extract
Yeast food
Autolyzed yeast

Often are hidden names for MSG:

Malted Barley (flavor)
Natural Flavors, Flavors, Flavoring Modified food starch
Barley malt
Citric acid
Reaction Flavors
Rice syrup or brown rice syrup
Malt Extract or Flavoring
Natural Chicken, Beef, or Pork, Flavoring "Seasonings" (Most assume this means salt, pepper, or spices and herbs, which sometimes it is.) Lipolyzed butter fat
Enzymes anything
Maltodextrin, dextrose, dextrates
Soy Sauce or Extract
"Low" or "No Fat" items
Caramel Flavoring (coloring)
Soy Protein
Corn syrup and corn syrup solids, high fructose corn syrup
Soy Protein Isolate or Concentrate
Citric Acid (when processed from corn)
Cornstarch fructose (made from corn)
Milk Powder
Flowing Agents
Dry Milk Solids
Wheat, rice, corn, or oat protein
Protein Fortified Milk
Whey Protein or Whey
Anything enriched or vitamin enriched
Whey Protein Isolate or Concentrate
Protein fortified "anything"
Enzyme modified proteins
Gums (guar and vegetable)
Ultra-pasteurized dairy products
Dough Conditioners
Protease enzymes
Fermented proteins
Yeast Nutrients
Gluten and gluten flour
Protein powders: whey, soy, oat, rice (as in protein bars shakes and body building drinks)
Amino acids (as in Bragg's liquid amino acids and chelated to vitamins)
Algae, phytoplankton, sea vegetable, wheat/ barley grass powders

Canola Oil

The FDA seems to think Canola Oil is okay; allowing canola labels to claim it supports heart health and reduces the risk of coronary heart disease. Even Whole Foods Markets is on board with canola oil, and most foods on their hot bar are swimming in it.

Proponents point out that canola is inexpensive, tastes good, and has the lowest saturated fat content of any common edible oil. Some health experts suggest a daily consumption of 1 1/2 tablespoons of canola oil.

Of course, you can stop right there with the "lowest saturated fat content." As soon as someone says "low fat" in any way, it's time to blow the whistle and call bull on what they're telling you. You won't find health, happiness, vitality and a healthy weight by eating things that advertise "low fat." Take avocados for example; high in fats, and not bad for you at all.

Mounting evidence is that canola oil actually promotes heart disease. Leading experts on oils and fats see canola oil as a victory for a food processing industry that will not be happy until all traditional, real foods have been replaced by imitation foods.

Food "Technology"

The fact is that Canola oil is a product of food technology; a hoax on the public rivaling the promotion of margarine. If you don't know about margarine, here's all you need to know: Take a stick of margarine and put it in your back yard. Nothing will eat it. Nothing will grow on it. It won't decompose. It's one short molecule step from being plastic.

Peanut oil comes from peanuts, and soybean oil comes from soybeans (most of which are owned by Monsanto, and are thereby GMO, so avoid that too), but there is no such thing a canola.

Canola is a marketing name derived from Canadian-oil. Canola oil comes from the rapeseed plant (Brassica napus). As we know it today, canola oil is the result of the hybridization and genetic modification.

Oil from the rapeseed plant as nature created it has been used in China, Japan and India for thousands of years as the poor man's cooking oil. The oil contained a long-chain fatty acid called erucic acid which was irritating to mucous membranes, and glucosinolates which taste so bitter that animals will not eat feed containing it.

Consumption of the original rapeseed oil was associated with high incidence of fibrotic heart lesions, known as Keshan's disease, as well as disorders of the central nervous system, lung and prostate cancer, anemia, and constipation. These were the characteristics that Canadian geneticists diligently tried to get rid of in their efforts to morph rapeseed oil into canola oil. Some health professionals believe there is still too much erucic acid present in the oil for safe use.

History of Manipulating Consumers

The food technology business operates on the Hegelian Principle. First a problem is created and blown out of proportion, and then a solution is offered. This is the same principle that criminal groups have used throughout history, and some still do today. They'll break into your home, steal from you, assult you: shake you up and make you miserable. Then, pretending to be a different group of people (perhaps different members of the same group, or perhaps they were masked during the thefts/assaults), they come along and say "We notice you need protection. We'll do that for $____ per _____." And if you say, "Oh, no, I don't need protection," then you get robbed/assaulted or whatever again.

Is the food technology business criminal? I think it is.

Food technologists got started right after World War II. One of their first efforts was to turn people against butter so they could be sold a concoction known as margarine. Eventually people woke up to the ill effects of margarine, and the food industry promoted their latest creation, polyunsaturated oils, as the new "healthy" alternative. But it quickly became clear that polyunsaturated oils, especially corn and soybean oils, caused numerous health problems.

Since the food industry had so effectively turned everyone against saturated fats, their only solution was to embrace the use of monounsaturated oils, with olive oil becoming the new darling. It was an easy switch, because the benefits of olive oil were documented in research and were associated with the health and longevity of people who ate the Mediterranean diet. The problem was that olive oil simply pressed from olives required no technological intervention, and olive oil was too expensive to be used in processed foods. The result was the birth of canola oil, newly named for the country where the majority of rapeseed plants are grown.

The name was not the only thing new. Genetic modification has made the already hybridized new rapeseed into a plant tolerant of the herbicide Roundup, a product of Monsanto. This modification reduces the amount of chemical needed for weed control in the fields where the hybridized plants are grown making rapeseed a cheap crop to produce. Because all proteins are removed from oil during processing, canola oil made from genetically modified rapeseed plants is claimed by its promoters to be the same as canola oil produced from conventionally grown rapeseed plants; however, some countries have banned the sale of oil made from genetically modified seeds.

Paying Murderers

And even if you say "to hell with my health" and don't care about yourself, there is still yet more reasons not to use it.

When purchasing this product you're supporting a corrupt industry, inflating an already overly-powerful corporation network that has no moral fiber whatsoever. You're giving money to murderers when you buy Canola Oil.

Beyond that, the way these large monocrops function (especially the GMO crops that use tons of chemicals such as RoundUp) is killing the bee population. We're looking at a crisis of dying bee colonies. It should be headline news, but instead we get advertisements for the newest phone, and holiday "treats" loaded with high fructose corn syrup.

Altered Nutrient Content

Researchers have discovered that industry claims are not true. A team from Food Quality and Safety Research in Peoria, Illinois studied oil derived from 12 different lines of genetically modified rapeseed varieties and analyzed each for phospholipids, tocopherols (Vitamin E), and phytosterols by various chromatographic techniques. As they have previously observed in genetically modified soybeans, there was a decrease in the content and composition of phosphatidic acid in three of the modified canola oils derived from the lines investigated.

Further analysis revealed variations in the phospholipid content of the major classes, despite few differences in their composition. Other data indicated that the molecular species distribution of phosphatidylethanolamine was significantly altered by genetic modification when compared to phosphatidylcholine. The impact of oilseed modification on the tocopherols content was variable. Phytosterol composition was markedly affected by genetic modification. Brassicasterol, campesterol, and beta sitosterol levels were consistently lower in one of the genotypes, whereas increased brassicasterol content was observed in another variety.

These findings mean that changes in composition resulting from genetic modification have significantly altered the synergy and balance created by nature. When natural balance is altered, the integrity of the plant is lost and it is no longer a proper food source. But this was no matter to a food industry that was thrilled with the new rapeseeds because they were loaded with monounsaturated fats, and low in toxic erucic acids and bitter tasting glucosinolates. And even better, the new rapeseed also contained about 10 percent omega-3 fatty acids. Canola oil was ready for marketing to a population that was just beginning to embrace healthy eating.

Canola Oil, like Soybeans, are generally GMO

Since its introduction in the fields of Canada in 1995, acreage devoted to the new rapeseed has steadily grown. Today more than 80 percent of the crop comes from genetically modified seed, making it illegal in Europe and a target of activists worldwide. Contamination of conventional rapeseed crops from neighboring genetically engineered fields has been a serious problem for Canadian farmers. In March, 2008, Monsanto's Canadian unit settled out of court for clean-up costs of $660 for the contamination of one farmer's field in a heavily publicized case of the little guy battling the corporate giant.

Regulation Manipulation

The next marketing challenge for the Canola Council of Canada was the fact that rapeseed was never given GRAS (Generally Recognized As Safe) status by the USDA. Before canola oil could be marketed in the U.S., a change in regulation was required. Much rumor and speculation surrounds how this was achieved. When GRAS status was granted in 1985, word was that it cost the Canadian government $50 million to buy it, but this has never been proven.

Soon recipes began appearing in books sponsored by leading health gurus, such as Andrew Weil, and by diet books and newspaper columns promoting canola oil as the equivalent of olive oil. Today, sales of the oil have soared in many parts of the world. Canola oil is found in spreads, and used almost exclusively in processed and packaged foods. It is the oil of choice for most restaurants and is the primary cooking oil in many homes. Unfortunately, the science does not support the enthusiasm for canola oil.

The Advice of Experts

Even though canola oil has GRAS status, no long-term studies of its effects on humans have been done. Animal studies using oil from "improved" rapeseeds have challenged the health claims made for canola oil as well as undermined what has come to be traditional thinking on the link between types of fats eaten and heart disease.

Sally Fallon and Mary G. Enig, Ph.D. are North America's leading experts on the subject of fats and oils. They have written extensively on the subject and many of their works can be found at the Weston A. Price Foundation website. The following is a summary of the research findings they consider relevant to the use of canola oil:

A study published in 1978 in the Netherlands investigated whether oil from hybridized rapeseed plants caused heart lesions in test animals. The scientists noted that in earlier studies, animals fed the high erucic-acid rapeseed oil showed growth retardation and undesirable changes in various organs, especially the heart, spurring development of hybridized versions of the seed. The results were mixed. Rats genetically selected to be prone to heart lesions developed more lesions on the hybridized rapeseed oil and also on flax oil than they did on olive oil or sunflower oil. This led researchers to speculate that omega-3 acids, not eurcic acid might be the culprit. But rats genetically selected to be resistant to heart lesions showed no significant difference between the oils tested, and the hybridized rapeseed oil was not shown to cause heart problems in mice, in contrast to the old, high erucic oil which induced severe cardiac necrosis.

In 1982, researchers at the Canadian Institute for Food Science and Technology looked at the interaction of saturated fats with rapeseed oil and soybean oil. When saturated fats in the form of cocoa butter were added to the diets, the rats in both groups had better growth and a significant lowering of heart lesions than when fed rapeseed oil alone. The results supported the conclusion that heart lesions in male rats were related to the balance of dietary fatty acids, not to cardio-toxic contaminants in the oils.

In 1997, after the appearance of the genetically modified rapeseed, Canadian researchers found that piglets fed milk replacement containing canola oil showed signs of vitamin E deficiency, even though the milk replacement contained adequate amounts of vitamin E. Piglets fed soybean oil-based replacement fortified with the same amount of vitamin E did not show vitamin E deficiency. This may be the result of the effects of genetic modification on vitamin E as documented in the Peoria, Illinois study.

In 1998, the same research group reported that piglets fed canola oil suffered from a decrease in platelet count and an increase in platelet size. Bleeding time was longer in piglets fed both the hybridized rapeseed oil and the new hybridized and genetically modified canola oil. These changes were mitigated by the addition of saturated fatty acids from either coca butter or coconut oil to the piglets' diet. Another study a year later again found that canola oil suppressed the normal developmental increase in platelet count.

Studies at the Heath Research and Toxicology Research Divisions in Ottawa, Canada discovered that rats bred to have high blood pressure and proneness to stroke had shortened life-spans when fed canola oil as the only source of fat. The results of a later study suggested that the problem was the sterol compounds in the oil, which made cell membranes more rigid and contributed to the shortened life-span of the animals. Sterols were shown in the Peoria study to be markedly impacted by genetic modification of rapeseed.

Fallon and Enig conclude, "These studies all point in the same directions, that canola oil is definitely not healthy for the cardiovascular system. Like rapeseed oil, its predecessor, canola oil is associated with fibrotic lesions of the heart. It also causes vitamin E deficiency, undesirable changes in the blood platelets, and shortened life-span in stoke-prone rats when it was the only oil in the animals' diet. Furthermore, it seems to retard growth which is why the FDA does not allow the use of canola oil in infant formula. When saturated fats are added to the diet, the undesirable effects of canola oil are mitigated."

In his book Young Again: How to Reverse the Aging Process, health advisor John Thomas links rapeseed with the outbreak of mad cow disease that led to the wide scale destruction of animals in Great Britain in the early 1990s. According to Thomas, rapeseed oil was widely used in animal feeds from 1986 until the outbreak of the disease. Reports at the time blamed the bizarre behavior of livestock on the viral disease, scrapie. However, when rapeseed oil was removed from animal feed, the disease disappeared.

Thomas believes that glaucoma is the result of insufficient blood flow due to agglutination (clumping together) of red blood cells and waste buildup on the cells and intercellular fluids. He suggests that the ingestion of canola oil over time may cause the disease as well as other vision irregularities such as retinitis. He explains how the clumped red cells cannot squeeze through the tiny capillaries in the posterior of the eye, resulting in an inability of oxygen to be delivered to the mitochondria of cells in the retina.

Canola oil is an acetlycholinesterase inhibitor. Acetylcholine is critical to the transmission of signals from nerves to muscles. When the enzyme that catalyzes acetylcholine metabolism is compromised, nerve fibers cannot signal muscles to respond as desired, he says.

Trans Fats

Although the rapeseed has been a source for oil since ancient times due to its ease of extraction from the seed, modern processing adds a whole different dimension. Fallon and Enig have vividly described the procedure during which oil is removed by a combination of high temperature mechanical pressing and solvent extract, usually using hexane. Following considerable refining, traces of the solvent remain. And like all vegetable oils, canola oil goes through the process of caustic refining, bleaching and degumming, all of which involve high temperatures or the use of hazardous chemicals.

During this processing, the omega-3 content in the oil becomes rancid and smelly, and the oil must be deodorized. The foul omega-3 fatty acids are cleaned up by being largely turned into trans fatty acids. Although the Canadian government lists the trans fat content of canola oil at a minimal 0.2 percent, research at the University of Florida at Gainesville found trans fat levels as high as 4.6 in commercial liquid oil. In a time when almost everyone is aware of the tremendous health hazards posed by trans fats, people eating canola oil have no idea of the presence of trans fat in the oil they are consuming.

When canola oil is hardened through hydrogenation as it often is when used in food processing, the trans fat level can go as high as 40 percent. Because canola oil hydrogenates better than corn or soybean oils it is the first choice of processors. Higher levels of trans fat translates to longer self life for processed food, and greater profits for the food industry.

You where you won't find any msg or canola oil or genetic modification? In your own carefully created organic garden. If you always wanted to start up one, quit the excuses and start now. The more edibles you grow, the more money you save on medical bills later.

If you're looking to make a healthy change in your life, I invite you to read my story, try my recipes and contact me with your questions.

Do your part and boycott Canola Oil and products linked to Monsanto.