Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Jellyfish and Industrial Farming?

So you're probably wondering what jellyfish and industrial non-sustainable farming have in common? A lot actually! And their connection, which is not an environmentally good one mind you, has implications that cause marine dead-zones that span the globe... and these nitrogen enriched bodies of water not only effect marine ecosystems but humans as well.

So what sparked this discussion? I have to admit it was this documentary on one of the nature channels, "The Rise of the Jellyfish", that brought my attention to this horrible mostly man-made atrocity. What really grabbed my attention though was the link between these jellyfish infused "dead-zones" and industrial farming. It turns out that nitrogen runoff from chemical fertilizers, as well as mass quantities of animal waist, seep into rivers and streams where they eventually make their way into the ocean sometimes spanning thousands of square miles hovering the coastline. These high levels of nitrogen and phosphorus create an algae paradise, so much so that massive algae blooms take over continually depleting the waters oxygen levels until they are so low that nearly all marine life in the area suffocates! All except jellyfish apparently... they thrive in such conditions! This ultimately has a rippling effect on not only the underwater ecosystem by those mammals on land (humans) that depend so heavily on the oceans bounty.

So what is the answer?

  • How about local organic sustainable farming!
  • How about using the land around you to farm in a natural non-detrimental way in order to feed local communities.
  • How about using nature's fertilizer; manure from herbivores (cows, sheep, etc.) or fowl to naturally fertilize the soil instead of relying on the nutrient depleting nitrogen infusing method of over tilling and chemically fertilizing.
  • How about more farmers raising grass-fed and free-range animals mimicking natures method of sanitizing the land (birds following herbivores as they scratch through the droppings), rather than adding to the influx of nitrogen in the soil with massive dumping sites for the mass quantities of manure that industrial farming produces.
  • How about we the consumer demand locally sustainably grown and raised products in season, instead of what you want when you want it for as cheap as you can get it.
  • How about caring about where your food comes from and how it got to your table, rather than taking the typical "I don't even want to know" stance.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Human Waste as Fertilizer????

I saw something about this some time ago, I believe it was on the Discovery channel but I'm not sure; "Human Waste used as Fertilizer". It was about a company in the U.S. that has found a use for something we Americans produce in mind boggling numbers... human waste. The more you research this subject the more instances you find; most of which are in developing countries, but not all. This particular family owned and operated company (the one I saw on tv) was in my opinion using today's increasingly popular "go green and recycle" creed to a disturbing extreme.

With what I've learned about sustainable organic farming, or as Joel Salatin likes to say "beyond organic", manure used for fertilizer must come from those herbivores and ruminants feeding on grass (cows, sheep, etc.) and or those foraging behind these grass eating creatures of this world (such as chickens), not people! Now I'm not a highly educated researcher in this field, but with a little common sense I think it becomes very apparent that what comes out of one end is a product of what goes in the other...

Americans as a whole ingest more toxic chemicals, be it pharmaceuticals, pollutants, pesticides, or the dozens of other chemicals our government allows in non-organic processed foods, so who in their right mind would think that using this as a fertilizer is a good idea? Cancer, heart disease, diabetes, and other inflammatory diseases and disorders plague our society in epidemic proportions, all of which can be blamed in one way or another on the typical American diet.

If what we are eating is killing us, then why would our waste make for good fertilizer?

Monday, September 12, 2011

Pesticides and ADHD

How could I not post about this medical headline; Pesticides in food linked to ADHD in kids.

I really enjoy seeing articles such as this coming from the medical community. It takes much longer (if ever at all) for MD's to come to terms with what ND's as well as others following a more natural path have been preaching for some time now... There are no benefits to spraying our food with pesticides that outweigh the negative risks!

The article starts off by pointing out the correlation between the levels of pesticides in our food with the significant increase in children's risk of developing attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Quoting Phil Landrigan, MD who is a professor and chair of the department of community and preventive medicine at Mount Sinai School of Medicine; "It's mainly exposure through food. Diet is the driver."

One interesting point made towards the end of the article that is worth mentioning is the dangerous levels of pesticides in processed foods. Most people think about produce when the word pesticide is mentioned, but not usually processed foods even though processed foods probably make up more than 75% of the average American's diet. The point that the article makes is that due to GMO's (genetically modified organisms) in processed foods, primarily Soy and Corn, which have been engineered to by pesticide resistant, are highly sprayed crops contributing to pesticide exposure at dangerous levels.

And to further drive home this point, it's not just processed foods that you should be concerned about; don't forget if you're eating beef or pork or chicken or fish or eggs or any dairy products that come from animals that are not free ranged or grass fed, then you are essentially eating GMO corn and soy because that's exactly what they are being fed.

The only way you can be sure that you are doing all you can do to avoid pesticides in your food as well as making sure you are eating as healthy a diet as possible is to support your local organic sustainable farmers. This is why I continually post on the importance of organic locally and sustainably grown foods as the core of any healthy diet. Organic is important, but local organic sustainable farming takes "knowing where your food comes from" to a much more intimate level.

Remember this; you are what your food eats. If you know exactly what the cows, pigs, sheep, and chickens that eventually make it to your table are eating and how they were raised, and if you know exactly how the vegetables that are hopefully making it to your table were grown, then and only then can you be sure you are eating healthy.

Friday, September 9, 2011

A Natural Approach to Healing

This is a topic I have wanted to post about for some time now, but wasn't really sure how to make the transition from allergy free cooking to natural healing... well I think I have since made that transition over that past few years, so here is my official unofficial introduction.

I have been intrigued by this subject (Natural Healing) for some time now and have been practicing it religiously since I became aware of my food allergies. I have come to understand that any ailment the body is struggling to cope with, whether it be allergy related (both food and seasonal as well as asthma related), structurally based (tendonitis/arthritis/muscle and joint pain/etc.), or disease based (cancer/heart disease/diabetes/etc.) they are all diet related and all have some common link to inflammation.

Our bodies are stressed beyond levels that they were ever designed to be subjected to, and from nearly every aspect of our lives. We live in a very 'man-made' toxic world, and its how our bodies individually deal with these toxins that ultimately dictate our overall health. Whether they are the unavoidable toxins such as pollution from cars, factories, or the billions of tons of jet fuel dumped into the atmosphere every day, or those toxins we can avoid like the cancer causing chemicals in our food, drinking water, hygiene products, cleaning products, and in most all of the everyday products we come into contact with, the truth is our immune systems are being taxed to the extreme and it's our (your) job to do something about it!

I will conclude my introduction into a natural approach to healing with this basic creed for living healthy...

Stay healthy by eating organic locally sustainably grown foods whenever possible and 100% organic GMO free minimally processed foods to complement your diet; use only 100% chemical free organic hygiene products; use only 100% naturally derived household cleaning products, and avoid all products containing toxic chemicals.

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