Are Dietary Advanced Glycation End Products Unhealthy for You?


Lately there has been a concern that the vegan diet, which while being rich in both fruits and vegetables is an unhealthy diet due to its supposedly high levels of glycation, and may be contributing to the rise in diabetes and cardiovascular disease.  This seemed an odd thing to me, since I was sure that fruits and vegetables did not have a causal relationship to either diabetes or cardiovascular disease, so I decided to look this up and see what was going on myself.


So, what did I find?  Well, according to the information below, animal-based foods are rich in AGE’s, and increase these after cooking.  However, fruits, vegetables and grains are not rich in AGE’s, and they don’t increase in these after cooking.  I’ve left two links, the first one is the actual findings of the study, and the second is a listing of all kinds of food with their AGE information so that you can pick and choose the healthiest foods to eat.  I hope that this summary clears up any confusion you might have.  I know that it helped me.



Music and Health


As someone who spends way too much time being depressed and suffering from anxiety about the state of the world – and other things that I can really do little about, I do my best to listen to music that is designed specifically to soothe, relax and bring about a peaceful frame of mind.  Because of this I was wondering if listening to certain kinds of music had been found to scientifically improve mood and health.  So, of course, I looked into it.


So, what I’ve discovered is that yes music is a valid, scientific way of improving health.  It is used in a variety of medical situations including depression, anxiety, autism, dementia, brain development and sleep disorders.  It is also used in the premature baby ward in many hospitals to help promote the growth and health of these babies.  Different types of music also enhance different feelings; for example, rock music increases the heart-rate and can either agitate or energize.  Personally, I try to usually listen to peaceful and relaxing music since I’m just a bit hyper and on edge naturally.


Do you purposefully listen to different types of music to either energize or to relax?  Let me know in the comments below.



I’ve Been Sick!


I’ve been sick for about 6 days now.  I was off the computer/social media for four days.  Apparently I receive way too much mail, as I’ve got almost 700 letters in there to be read.  Yeah, sure…I’ll probably spend hours deleting when I really ought to do “delete all”.  However, there is always the chance that there is something important that I don’t want to miss.  So many petitions to sign, so little time.


So, have I been doing anything worthwhile while I was sick?  No, just reading (there is no such thing as just reading) re-watching the X Files, and trying to get more sleep.  That’s all.  On Sunday I had a little more energy and did some laundry, changed the sheets and started to go through all those emails.  I sincerely hope that you had a much better weekend then I did.


I Finally Went to the Doctor


After two weeks of being sick, I finally finally finally gave up the ghost and went to the doctor. Whatever could I be sick of? Well, it turns out that my simple sinus infection decided to morph into walking pneumonia without asking me what I thought of that idea. It was pretty rude, and I am not happy. When the doctor asked me what I had been doing to help myself, she was not too impressed when I told her I’d been spending a lot of time lying on my bed practicing my Yoga breaths while chanting “health in, sickness out” in my mind, each time I breathed in and out, respectively. And, I must say on a side note, that even though this did not cure my illness, it certainly helped with my horrible asthma – I have not had to use my one remaining emergency inhaler. I’m now taking medication for the infection, and I was able to talk her into giving me some cough syrup for night-time – the doctors seem to think that you can somehow magically sleep through all the extreme coughing.


I’ll be spending the weekend trying to get well, drinking tea and water and still lying on my bed breathing those wonderful Yoga breaths – learning to breathe properly is the best gift I’ve ever given myself.


Learn from me, if you are sick, go to the doctor – if I’d gone sooner, maybe I wouldn’t be as sick as I am right now. Trying to always save money sometimes ends up costing more in the end. Stay healthy!

How Fibromyalgia Makes Being Sick Even Worse



I try not to talk about my Fibromyalgia much, since I don’t want to even think about it. I’ve always been the type to ignore any illness, since if I ignore it hopefully it will go away. However, I do realize that Fibromyalgia won’t magically go away, every time I get a cold, or a sinus issue, I have to deal with the fact that I’ve got no immune system, and no reserves to help fight a sickness.


This week was supposed to have been a great start to the New Year. I was going to really get going with my writing and studying. Instead I’ve spent most of it lying on the couch drinking tea and sleeping. I didn’t even get much reading done. That’s how I knew I was really sick, since I can always manage to read. However, I woke up today and decided that I’d had enough. In the past I’ve been able to just keep on going, but ever since I’ve gotten a little older, I seem to have lost that ability. Why can a simple sinus issue lay me out flat? And, most importantly why am I letting it? So, my new challenge is to do what I can every day. Today I managed to check my email and write this. I’ll make dinner tonight, but in between, I’ll be on the couch with my tea, trying to recover. Being sick sucks!


Snake Oil Abounds!

I get a lot of spam, whether it’s in my email box, or by snail mail in my real mailbox. Years ago I subscribed to Prevention magazine, and since then the purveyors of snake oil have me on their mailing lists.  Usually I simply throw these letters unread into my recycling bin (where they so rightly belong), but every once in a while I decide to read the letters they oh so hopefully send to me. So, on Sunday afternoon I sat down and read the latest one.

This letter began with a dissertation on how the Medical Industry has a reason for keeping us all sick. They make money on our illnesses. I actually agree with this, as many doctors will prescribe all kinds of medicines without ever actually letting you know other ways of healing yourself. And, from what I’ve observed way too many people would rather pop a pill than change their lifestyle. When I was taking my various elderly clients out to their doctors almost every day of the week, there were doctors whose waiting rooms held more Pharmaceutical sales reps than patients. I find this a rather disturbing trend. I myself would rather go to a doctor who is aware of the “whole body” way of treating illnesses, rather than throw a prescription at every symptom. Now, I’m not saying that prescriptions aren’t necessary; because of course they can be necessary in many cases. But, I’m saying that they can also be overused:

So, as you can see, I’m not the only one who thinks that prescriptions are often over-used in American medical practices.

But, to get back to my snake oil salesman; in this particular letter, he goes on to describe the 2009 Noble winning doctors and their research into the anti-aging DNA sequence called telomere.
Good for my anti-aging doctor; this actually exists, and the findings sound really good. A way for us to “pop” some pills – this time his “special” all-natural concoction if only we give him basically $100.00 plus the price of the pills, of course.

Me being me, I looked further into this telomere information, and at first it looked really fantastic. I mean, who doesn’t want to wander into old-age as young as they can? Who doesn’t this letter appeal to? This would supposedly help your DNA from losing the long strands thereby keeping your cells young forever. This looked good; there was real science behind it. But, I kept going. After all, this was real money we were talking about here. However there was something that I wasn’t all that crazy about. One of the “free” eBooks that was being offered by this doctor was one that claimed being a Vegetarian was not healthy or compassionate. Well, I don’t know exactly what else he claimed, as I’m tightly holding onto my $100.00 in my little fist and not sending it to him; but there are many scientifically credible studies that refute this statement.

So, when I read that, I decided to continue my research – after all, what else is there to do on a Sunday afternoon?

This article discusses the latest anti-aging research, and also quotes Nobel Laureate (one of the 2009 Nobel winners for the scientific findings that this snake oil doctor is basing his information on) Dr. Elizabeth Blackburn stating that increasing the length of the telomere can make cancer cells virtually impossible to kill; thereby increasing the risks of cancer. Interesting, and rather scary.  Also, not mentioned by my snake oil salesman.  On another note, Dr. Blackburn also talks about other stressors not related to telomere that can increase the aging process as well as the development of illness.

My take-away from all the research I did?  The only way to increase our “health span” is through the good old-fashioned ones: a healthy lifestyle. Yep, no “magic pill”. Sorry, I just knew it was too good to be true.

Follow Up to My Fibromyalgia Fears

I’ve recently looked up the acronym F.E.A.R. False Evidence Appearing Real. Now, I couldn’t unearth the actual person who came up with this, however there was an abundance of articles and videos all over the Internet. I thought that I would write about this as a counterpoint to my post on Monday about my fear of “giving in” to my Fibromyalgia.

I know that fear is really false evidence appearing to be real, since I know in my heart of hearts that I wouldn’t just pull the covers over my head and live in my bed. I’m simply much too stubborn to do that. But boy does it sound cozy especially with all the nasty weather we’ve been having, though. I know that won’t happen, but there are so many aspects to this fear. Other people with this disease need to use canes and walkers – so will it happen to me? I doubt it. The only problem I’ve had with walking is a bunion that is just being extremely difficult at the moment. I should have had it taken care of years ago, but never felt that it was the “right time”. Of course the “right time” will never in a million years appear, so I’m really good at putting it off and putting it off. Just like actually going to a doctor. I feel okay, why bother? I mean that I get up and keeping on going, why would I need to go see a doctor? I’m sure that you can see where I’m going with this. I live in the land of de Nile.

But is this bad? I’m of two minds on this one. On the one hand I can dismiss most of my F.E.A.R. as it will most likely never happen. On the other hand, how can I be sure that I’m okay? I mostly feel okay. I’ll never see 35 again. For the past (I won’t say how many) years my birthday has morphed into the anniversary of my turning 35. I usually don’t spend a lot of time thinking about my age. But this winter I noticed that I was “slowing” down a little. Instead of happily bouncing around while hauling wood, I felt tired. (Yes, there are times that I have the attitude of an obnoxious Jack Russell).  But, the little voice that lives in my mind told me that it could have a little something to do with the fact that I hadn’t been working out as religiously as I ought too. If you don’t use it, you lose it. Too true, by the way.

What has my solution been, you ask? Well, I started getting up at 5 am and working out. The surprising thing about this is that at the same time I started to set tasks for myself to do of 30 minutes to an hour long during the day. It’s amazing what I’ve been able to get done. Knowing that I only have to do something that I dislike (checkbook and budget set-up) for only half an hour is great. You can manage to do almost anything for just half an hour, even if you hate it. My energy level has been up, and I feel better than I have in a while.

I have to say that looking at my fear, and understanding that it’s actually F.E.A.R. has helped tremendously. I’m not saying that other people don’t have serious problems with Fibromyalgia; I’m just saying that I’ve been lucky enough not to have it too awfully bad. And for that, I thank my lucky stars; and from now on won’t go looking for problems that I don’t have.