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Saturday, January 31, 2009

Tea prevents cognitive decline

Tea drinking appears to prevent cognitive decline, which is a forerunner of mental diseases such as Alzheimer's.1 Tea has this effect, it is believed, through its antioxidant and polyphenol properties. Tea also inhibits the action of the enzyme acetylcholinesterase. Acetylcholinesterase degrades the neurotransmitter acetylcholine, which helps cognition. Therefore tea boosts cognition.2 Because tea increases acetylcholine, a brain neurotransmitter, it may also help in the treatment of Alzheimer's.3

References
  1. Tea consumption and cognitive impairment and decline in older Chinese adults. Tze-Pin Ng, Lei Feng, Mathew Niti, Ee-Heok Kua and Keng-Bee Yap. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, Vol. 88, No. 1, 224-231, July 2008. (Accessed Jan.31, 2009).
  2. In vitro anti-beta-secretase and dual anti-cholinesterase activities of Camellia sinensis L. (tea) relevant to treatment of dementia. Okello EJ, Savelev SU, Perry EK. Phytother Res. 2004 Aug;18(8):624-7.
  3. Effects of green tea polyphenol on cognitive and acetylcholinesterase activities. Biosci Biotechnol Biochem. Kim HK, Kim M, Kim S, Kim M, Chung JH. 2004. Sept. 68(9):1977-9. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15388975. (Accessed March 31, 2009.)




Friday, January 30, 2009

Dating Site for Horse Lovers

Let me tell you something about this girl I knew when I was in grammar school. She loved horses. She was very short and she lived in a house set back from the street and we never saw her after school. We also never saw her on weekends. I always thought that she was in her house, far away from the street, studying or something. Turns out she was away at riding school! Yes, she and her family were big horse aficionados. An aficionado is a fan or an enthusiast. Before she was in high school this girl could ride a horse at forty miles an hour and jump over fences. She had all the riding apparel, too. She wore jodhpurs and riding boots and very smart leather gloves. I met her years later, after she had graduated from college. She told me about this very intriguing Web site for people like her. "It's where I met my boyfriend," she said. "The site lets you find other people who are horse lovers, people just like me who like to ride and who like other people who share their interests." The FREE sign-up allows you to try it at no risk. The site is also known as equestrian cupid. And it's true that the horse lovers dating site has free sign-ups. I myself am not as crazy about horses as she is, but I sure would like to find out more about this site, and who knows maybe I'll take up the hobby. She sure has a nice wardrobe. And her boyfriend is very nice too. He reminds me of Mr. Rochester from Jayne Eyre. Try to check this out today! It's FREE sign-up.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Rooibos Tea

There is a new tea from South Africa, well, not new to the South Africans (who have been consuming it for untold generations), but new to me. This is Rooibos tea. It cannot be distinguished, in taste tests, from black tea.1 It has less antioxidant activity than green tea but more than black tea.2 I tried it for the first time tonight and found it okay. It has no caffeine but many health advantages.

References
  1. 1998. Caffeine Blues: Wake up to the Hidden Dangers of America’s #1 Drug. Cherniske, Stephen Snehan. New York: Warner Books.
  2. 1997. "Comparison of the antioxidant activity of rooibos tea (Aspalathus linearis) with green, oolong and black tea." A. Von Gadowa, E. Joubertb, C. F. Hansmannb. Food Chemistry. Volume 60, Issue 1, September, Pages 73-77. doi:10.1016/S0308-8146(96)00312-3. http://www.sciencedirect.com/science?_ob=ArticleURL&_udi=B6T6R-3RH0BJ6-D&_user=10&_rdoc=1&_fmt=&_orig=search&_sort=d&view=c&_acct=C000050221&_version=1&_urlVersion=0&_userid=10&md5=c4269bd826e4d6290c7fa5ea414ccd91 (accessed Jan. 25, 2009).

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Caffeine Raises Homocysteine


I discovered that coffee raises homocysteine.1 This is certainly not good news for those who wish to avoid heart disease and stroke! Because homocysteine contributes to both diseases in significant ways. Caffeine has many effects on the brain; primarily increasing alertness and opposing sleep.2 Caffeine also contributes to the habitual use of coffee and may be habit forming, although not nearly so addictive as cocaine.3

References
  1. "Contribution of caffeine to the homocysteine-raising effect of coffee: a randomized controlled trial in humans." American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, Vol. 76, No. 6, 1244-1248, December 2002. Petra Verhoef, Wilrike J Pasman, Trinette van Vliet, Rob Urgert and Martijn B Katan. http://www.ajcn.org/cgi/content/full/76/6/1244 (Accessed Jan. 21, 2009).
  2. " Is Caffeine a Health Hazard?" Ben Best. http://www.benbest.com/health/caffeine.html (Accessed Jan. 21, 2009).
  3. "Actions of Caffeine in the Brain with Special Reference to Factors That Contribute to Its Widespread Use." Vol. 51, Issue 1, 83-133, March 1999. Bertil B. Fredholm1, Karl Bättig, Janet Holmén, Astrid Nehlig and Edwin E. Zvartau. http://pharmrev.aspetjournals.org/cgi/content/full/51/1/83 (An extensive investigation of the effect of caffeine on brain function and chemistry) (Accessed Jan. 21, 2009).

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Energized Seller


I do not have a dog. In fact, I do not like dogs. I once had a dog but I did not trust him and he did not trust me. It was mutual enmity from start to finish. In fact, my dog tried to kill me once after I returned from a vacation, but I won't go into that now; instead I want to tell you about a way for your pet pictures to be used. There are 101 Home Selling and Staging Tips to be found. And really it's true that Energized Seller is involved. But more importantly, there is a contest for your scariest or funniest pet photos at http://energizedseller.com/forums/t/152.aspx. Please visit the contest and enter it. Then you can send in your own photos of your pet, or of a pet you know. The pet I know is pictured above. Some people think it is a fish. There are fish that can look like birds (aquatic chameleon fish that change shape to mimic other animals), but this is a real bird. Tweet-tweet! I'd like to also introduce you today to 101 Home Selling and Staging Tips, which you can find at this URL: http://energizedseller.com/content/101HomeSellingTips.aspx. More than this, I'd like to talk a little further about my experiences with animals, but time forbids this digression. Instead, I will close with a little story about a time my birds ate crackers. The bird was from Argentina, and a beautiful bird it was. Anyway, please don't forget to join the contest of pet pictures today, then you will have a chance to Win $500. Hurry, check this out right away!
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Tea, but not Coffee, Reduces Homocysteine

I stopped drinking coffee last week because I discovered research indicating coffee increased homocysteine.1 Homocysteine has been implicated in heart disease and stroke, and you don't want to increase your homocysteine! So, coffee was off my list. Turns out there are various ingredients in coffee responsible for this increase; caffeine is only part of the story. So, what about tea? Good news: for most people, tea reduces homocysteine. Researchers said, "studies overall suggest more of an inverse relation between tea intake and tHcy [total homocysteine] concentrations."2 There are some who metabolize polyphenols differently, and for them tea will increase homocysteine, but most individuals will benefit from moderate tea consumption (say, up to 5 cups per day). Tea has not, however, been shown to reduce in vivo lipid peroxidation; the oxidation of arachidonic acid produces harmful metabolic byproducts, and apparently tea does not have the capacity in vivo to combat this problem.3

References
  1. 2000. "Heavy coffee consumption and plasma homocysteine: a randomized controlled trial in healthy volunteers." Rob Urgert, Trinette van Vliet, Peter L Zock and Martijn B Katan. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, Vol. 72, No. 5, 1107-1110, November. http://www.ajcn.org/cgi/content/abstract/72/5/1107 (Accessed Jan. 21, 2009).
  2. 2003. "Can black tea influence plasma total homocysteine concentrations?" American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, Vol. 77, No. 4, 907-911, April. Jonathan M Hodgson, Valerie Burke, Lawrence J Beilin, Kevin D Croft and Ian B Puddey. http://www.ajcn.org/cgi/content/full/77/4/907 (Accessed Jan. 21, 2009).
  3. 2002. "Regular Ingestion of Tea Does Not Inhibit In Vivo Lipid Peroxidation in Humans." Jonathan M. Hodgson, Kevin D. Croft, Trevor A. Mori, Valerie Burke, Lawrence J. Beilin and Ian B. Puddey. J. Nutr. 132:55-58. http://jn.nutrition.org/cgi/content/full/132/1/55 (Accessed Jan. 21, 2009).

The Confidence Man

Herman Melville wrote a novel called The Confidence Man and in it he talks about a stranger who boards a steamer going down the Mississippi. It seems to me that this novel is similar to Knut Hamsun's Mysteries, in which a stranger in a yellow suit befuddles the people of a small Norwegian town and eventually kills himself after being frustrated in love. There is nothing much, however, in either book about rubber stamps.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Red Maca | Source

I have discovered a good source of red maca. The benefits of this substance were discussed elsewhere on this blog. Those benefits include fighting BPH and certain forms of cancer.

Source
  1. Natural Zing Red Maca.http://www.naturalzing.com/catalog/product_info.php?products_id=821 (Accessed 1/19/09.)

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Fellini and the Circus

The circus was Fellini's favorite background and backdrop to his films. There are many wonderful circus scenes and themes in his movies. In the film 8½ there is a circus scene that is especially poignant at the end of the story where the hero, played by Marcello Mastroianni, is walking around a circus ring followed by all the other characters, who represent people from his life. The famed director was writing his own autobiography with this film, but I have no evidence that he ever used a fat burner.

Friday, January 16, 2009

The Smell of Coffee

There is intriguing research from Japanese scientists suggesting that the mere smell of coffee may act as a stress reducer and stimulant. The aroma had antioxidant and stress reduction action. This effect was mediated by mRNA. Tests were performed on rats, but anecdotal evidence suggests that humans may feel a similar effect.

References
  1. 2008. Effects of Coffee Bean Aroma on the Rat Brain Stressed by Sleep Deprivation: A Selected Transcript- and 2D Gel-Based Proteome Analysis. Han-Seok Seo, Misato Hirano, Junko Shibato, Randeep Rakwal, In Kyeong Hwang and Yoshinori Masuo. J. Agric. Food Chem., (June 3) 56 (12), pp 4665–4673. DOI: 10.1021/jf8001137. Also available online at http://pubs.acs.org/doi/abs/10.1021/jf8001137 (Accessed Jan 17, 2009.)

Monday, January 12, 2009

New Partnership for Olympics

The Olympic games started in ancient Greece, in the days before athletes had track shoes or weight rooms or computerized training aids and televised replays of their work. In those days they had to be tough and dedicated to their way of life. Today, their hardworking spirit lives on in the form of SOGO Active. This is a new partnership between Coca-Cola and a Canadian nonprofit organization. Their purpose is to work together so that the funding from the large corporation can be used to promote its agenda while the little corporation promotes its agenda too. For this reason they plan to allow a contestant to win the right to be one of the torchbearers for the 2010 Olympics. This means the winner will be running with the torch through Canada, handing it off to someone else, and eventually that flame will be lit at the Olympic games. There are a number of spots available to Canadian youths. Those interested should contact their local agent and find out more details. They can hope for a chance to participate and then try to win a spot. If they qualify and are lucky enough to be chosen they may be part of the historic games. Although commercial sponsorship is something new, the games themselves are ancient and traditional. If you want more information, just visit the site of SOGO Active today.
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Be Your Own Doctor

Many people feel that a doctor is important as the person who will keep them well. This is a major error. These individuals abrogate the responsibility every person has to monitor their own health and decide what is good for themselves. The more you learn the healthier you will be. It is rather easy to gain proficiency. Read the Internet and books. Think for yourself. Each new discovery will empower you. Soon you'll have confidence and you will rely less on doctors. You will know more than they do about many issues relating to nutrition and health.

The Inside of Your Body

Science writer Konstantin Monastyrsky has been writing about the problems Americans, and people worldwide, face with the increasing push to have colonoscopies. Colon Cleanser is a product that works as a dual action cleanse and is touted as being a "safe and effective colon cleanser." There are many benefits, of course, to a healthful lifestyle. One of the best ways to accomplish a healthful lifestyle is not to rely on your family doctor, or any doctor. Instead, it is prudent to make your own study of the various nutritional and health supplements and protocols available. The only way to do this is to read and to become aware. You need to question what you read and determine for yourself what is best and what is going to work. If something sounds too good to be true, it probably is. If, on the other hand, you have a legitimate question that you wish answered, and if you do research on the Internet, you are likely to find some useful information. For example, if you have a colon problem and you research the subject you are going to, in all likelihood, find some articles that address the issue. Your task, of course, is to judge whether that information can be trusted, whether it sounds logical, and whether you wish to act upon it.

Coffee and Caffeine

The coffee I drink makes me edgy and focused for a few hours, keeps me awake at night, and interferes with the functioning of melatonin as a sleep aid. There is some suggestion that caffeine is processed in the liver by the same chromosome system as melatonin and perhaps this explains the effect.1 It is also known that caffeine coats the adenosine receptors in the brain, which leads to increased alertness.2 Caffeine also increases dopamine in the brain, a feel-good neurotransmitter; but going off caffeine drags you down and causes headaches and withdrawal symptoms, which may account for why many people are addicted to caffeine. The fact that caffeine increases dopamine makes it similar to cocaine, although cocaine's effect is more pronounced.3 Despite the many negatives, there are some advantages of coffee and caffeine, although the benefits are perhaps outweighed by the risk of vascular damage and other ills.4

References
  1. 2003. "Effects of caffeine intake on the pharmacokinetics of melatonin, a probe drug for CYP1A2 activity." Sebastian Härtter, Anna Nordmark, Dirk-Matthias Rose, Leif Bertilsson, Gunnel Tybring, and Kari Laine. Br J Clin Pharmacol. December; 56(6): 679–682. doi: 10.1046/j.1365-2125.2003.01933.x. Available online at www.pubmedcentral.nih.gov/articlerender.fcgi?artid=1884289. Accessed Jan 12, 2009.
  2. "Caffeine and Adenosine." Charles W. Bryant. http://health.howstuffworks.com/caffeine3.htm. Accessed Jan 12, 2009.
  3. "Caffeine and Dopamine." Charles W. Bryant. http://health.howstuffworks.com/caffeine4.htm. Accessed Jan 12, 2009.
  4. "Health Benefits of Caffeine." Charles W. Bryant. http://health.howstuffworks.com/caffeine5.htm. Accessed Jan 12, 2009.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

The South in 'Gone with the Wind'

Mitchell is noted for her competence in creating a believable background for the novel. Set during the Civil War, she did a great deal of historical research while laid up in bed with a foot injury. Her voluminous reading enabled her to paint vivid pictures of battle-torn Georgia, and against the rich canvas of war she set the action of her human drama, a drama of love, marriage and child-rearing that seems to rise to the level of importance of the war itself.

One way to create believable backgrounds is to use Mitchell’s technique of describing a war scene and then putting her characters into the situation like a painter imposing characters on the foreground of a landscape. One scene, for example, has Rhett meet her with the fire of burning Georgia in the background. Realism is Mitchell’s primary technique and she includes some encyclopedic descriptions. None of the people at that time used alli.

Interior Monolog in 'Gone with the Wind'

Mitchell was a master of interior monologue. The way she wrote the book intrigued readers because although she occasionally followed the thoughts of more than one character, the bulk of the novel is written in limited third-person viewpoint from Scarlett’s perspective. This means that the greater part of the story is seen from her eyes and vantage point. We know more about her than about any other character, and essentially the book boils down to a plea for her point of view, her emotional, innocent, conniving persona at the focus of a chaotic and terrible time in human history.

Of course, the method of shifting viewpoint often works best in a larger story, but Mitchell does it very rarely. Most readers care for Scarlett above all the other characters, and it is natural, therefore, for the author to reveal Scarlett’s thoughts more than those of any other character.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Southern Uniforms

The plot of Gone with the Wind twists and turns in a way that keeps readers interested. The characters are unpredictable. For example, Scarlett loves Rhett yet she marries another man. Rhett loves Scarlett yet he leaves her in the end. They have a child, whom they love, but the child dies in a freak accident, causing a rift between them that eventually leads to divorce. The many changes that Mitchell introduced into the life of Scarlett contributed to the novel’s reader appeal. There are numerous uniforms in the novel because of the Civil War, but no character ever wears a tuxedo.

Mishima

There is only one writer I know who possessed his own army, Yukio Mishima. He was a very patriotic Japanese novelist who decided to try to use his small army of 100 men to take over Japan. In 197o he stormed the Army headquarters and took a general hostage. Then he demanded that the army be summoned to listen to a speech. When the army refused to join him and his small group of men, Mishima killed himself. Before doing so, he had some photos made in the snow as he holds a sword and wears an adult diaper.

Margaret Mitchell

Born to be wild would be an apt description of author Margaret Mitchell. A hellion like her protagonist Scarlett O’Hara, Mitchell was born in 1900 and started telling stories from an early age. Her first was written when she was only six or seven, and more came soon thereafter. A lastborn with a brother four years older, Mitchell had a creative and rebellious attitude that extended into her professional and social life. She was a newspaper reporter at a time when women were not usually found in such jobs. She went out with men her family disapproved of, and her first husband (“Red”) was a bootlegger who beat her. Their marriage was brief and she married again, more successfully. Rhett Butler was based on her first husband.

Friday, January 9, 2009

Travel Insurance

My family likes to travel anywhere around the world. So, we are thinking of buying travel insurance for our safety and protection. We all know that accidents may happen in any place and we can't predict it. It's better to be safe than sorry later on. Anyway, if you are planning to travel too, why don't you get this? It's for your own sake and also for your family.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Back from a Kitchen Supply Convention

Because I am a good driver, I always check my rear view mirror. Last Wednesday, while driving home from from a kitchen supply convention in Baltimore, I ran a red light. At that point I stopped and realized that I should have been more cautious. The thing is, if it looks safe to do, some people will take the risk. But the better policy is to play by the rules. That little error made me realize that it was time to check out some Illinois auto insurance.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Potent Anti-Inflammatory 5-LOXIN

Researchers discovered that 3-O-acetyl-11-keto-beta-boswellic acid (AKBA), trade name 5-LOXIN, fights osteoarthritis. It is believed that it does this by reducing inflammation. It combats inflammation by selectively inhibiting 5-lipoxygenase (5-LOX), which is a byproduct of arachidonic acid. (Note 1.) Boswellia extract has been found to genetically influence at least 113 genes, reducing inflammation. (Note 2.)

References
  1. "A double blind, randomized, placebo controlled study of the efficacy and safety of 5-Loxin® for treatment of osteoarthritis of the knee." Krishanu Sengupta, Krishnaraju V Alluri, Andey Rama Satish, Simanchala Mishra, Trimurtulu Golakoti, Kadainti VS Sarma, Dipak Dey and Siba P Raychaudhuri. Arthritis Research & Therapy 2008, 10:R85. doi:10.1186/ar2461. http://arthritis-research.com/content/10/4/R85. (Accessed 12/28/08.)
  2. "Human Genome Screen to Identify the Genetic Basis of the Anti-inflammatory Effects of Boswellia in Microvascular Endothelial Cells." Sashwati Roy, Savita Khanna, Hiral Shah, Cameron Rink, Christina Phillips, Harry Preuss, Gottumukkala V. Subbaraju, Golakoti Trimurtulu, Alluri V. Krishnaraju, Manashi Bagchi, Debasis Bagchi, Chandan K. Sen. DNA and Cell Biology. April 1, 2005, 24(4): 244-255. doi:10.1089/dna.2005.24.244. http://www.liebertonline.com/doi/abs/10.1089%2Fdna.2005.24.244. (Accessed 12/28/08.)