Your Body’s Many Cries for Water

March 16, 2017

So goes the title of a rare book by F. Batmanghelidj, an Iranian born, British educated physician. Following medical school, he relocated to Iran to help establish hospitals and medical centers there.

In 1979, Dr. B. was imprisoned during the Iranian Revolution but managed to survive because the prison needed a doctor. One night, he was called to see a man with a peptic ulcer. He had no meds to treat the condition and told the man to drink two glasses of water and he would return later to check on him. When he did, to his amazement, the man’s condition was much improved. He continued to note the response to just water in other prisoners with other problems.

Dr. B. was released from prison in 1982, escaped from Iran, emigrated to the US, and set up a general practice. The full title of his book is, Your Body’s Many Cries for Water: You are not sick, you are thirsty! Don’t treat thirst with medications.

He attributed many common disease symptoms to dehydration as their root cause, and was careful to check that his clients were well hydrated before prescribing medications. He died in 2004, but his writings, while controversial, are still available on his website, http://www.watercure.com.

Health professionals today routinely encourage people to drink plenty of water. Medication needs water to be distributed throughout the body and keep all systems working well. Our food needs plenty of water to break it up so that it can pass through the wall of our intestines and on to the liver for distribution.

Despite the emphasis on carrying water everywhere we go today, many of us do not drink enough water. Coffee, tea, soda, and beer don’t count. They are dehydrators.

Over-the-counter meds, such as different forms of ibuprophen, taken excessively for chronic pain, can cause liver and kidney damage. If the kidneys’ can’t make enough urine, our bodies will retain too much water instead of using it.

How can we know we’re drinking enough water? What are the signs to be on the lookout for? Thirst is the last sign that we need water. Thirst is a reminder that we haven’t been paying attention to other body signals like pain of any kind, fatigue, dizziness, joint and muscle stiffness, difficulty remembering, following through on instructions, slow healing of injuries, and constipation, to name a few.

Today, potable water is threatened in the world, including the US. We need to provide all our citizens with a safe water supply, now threatened by a pipeline with a potential to contaminate Standing Rock’s supply. How we resolve this problem as a nation will determine water safety of other communities. Our actions today to save our water supply from pipelines and other potential contaminants and overuse, such as aquifers that are being drained due to poor agricultural practices.

What we can do is call or write our Senators and Representatives and urge them to veto harmful  legislation and support efforts to maintain a safe water supply for all our citizens. (http:/Senate.gov. , http:/House.gov. for contact info)

If you decide to check out the power of tap water (6-8 glasses a day), first be sure that your kidneys are making sufficient urine and increase the amount of tap water you drink slowly. Then, just observe the changes!

 

Trees Keep Talking. Are we listening?

March 16, 2017

Every life form on Earth speaks a language. Elephant-speak, Whale-speak, Cricket-speak, Beaver-speak …, you name it. All life forms are talking and we humans are getting a little better now at listening.

Peter Wohlleben, German forester/writer gives us a fascinating link to Tree-speak in his book, The Hidden Life of Trees. Wohlleben describes ways trees communicate with each other, how trees protect themselves from invading insects, lure insect predators to free them, and ensure a continuing replenishment of their families, their contribution to life on the planet. All in addition to supplying us with clean oxygen and recycling our carbon dioxide.

What an example of cooperation trees give us! Just as we log on and share our Internet, trees keep each other posted underground through their mycelium net, a fine fungal network that infinitely connects, signals, and nourishes all plant life. They do this via the web of soil fungi that connects and shares information and goods in what UBC Forest Ecology Professor, Susanne Simard calls the Wood Wide Web. You may remember her from the pbs.org video a few years ago, “What do plants talk about?”

Above ground, in the 1/3 of the forest we can see, trees give off chemical warnings to other trees when invaders attack, whether animals or insects. Trees can smell chemical warnings from other trees. They can even taste the saliva of leaf eating insects and send out a chemical that attracts predators that feed on that particular leaf eating insect.

The mycelium web streams through the 2/3 of the forest below ground that we cannot see. Trees have symbiotic relationships with other trees. Douglas firs like to have birch trees in their community. Birch mycelium provide firs with carbon in summer when Douglas fir is in shade. In the fall, when birch trees lose their leaves, the fir sends its excess carbon to the birch trees. Exchanges go on with nitrogen and other nutrients as they are needed among neighboring trees and plants. Socially, trees will even nourish the stump of a felled tree by feeding it sugars and other nutrients, keeping it alive.

When we think about expanding our energy resources, we need to keep this vital Wood Wide Web in mind. Currently in NH, our Wood Wide Web is being threatened by the Northern Pass Project which plans to disturb this web with either massive tower cement foundations 35’ deep in our NH forest and/or a deep trench disturbing the web alongside secondary roadways, uprooting trees and home plantings, blocking up commuters, school buses, disturbing water supplies with no consideration for the web. In addition, NP plans to build 500 miles of access roads through our forest.

Planners for Route 93 anticipated such needs when the road was built, hence the wide median which could accommodate future energy and transportation needs without disturbing our forests and neighborhoods. However, as we learn more about the 2/3 underground that provides a goldmine of nourishment, we need to be ever more creative in providing clean forms of energy such as solar and as yet undiscovered forms of energy that leave forests intact.

Time to be wary of Big Hydro. Ontario Hydro now has the highest energy rates in North America. Toronto pays 17.81 cents/kWh.  Ottawa pays 16.5 cents/kWh. Big Hydro is not cheap energy, much less environmentally clean. Quebec citizens are currently protesting HQ’s plan to destroy more of Quebec’s forest land to bury a pipeline to NH.

 

 

 

Vaccines Revisited

January 26, 2017

This month, “Vaccines Revealed”, a series of nine videos on Youtube, unravels the damage done by promoting, and even demanding as a requirement to attend school, that our children succumb to potentially life challenging or lethal vaccines.

Most researchers and physicians who presented had no problem with the vaccines themselves. The problem lies with the medium in which they are preserved. Pharmaceutical companies find it cheaper to put the vaccines in mediums containing thimerosol (mercury) and/or aluminum which cause brain damage and are responsible for the dramatic rise of autism in our children. Safer, more expensive vaccine mediums are available but one must know enough to ask for them.

General consensus was that vaccines are potentially healthy but they need to be given one at a time, they must not contain aluminum or mercury, and they must not be given too early. Researchers and physicians cited newborns receiving their first vaccine before they left the hospital. It appears that the practice of giving too many at a time and at too young an age, is what has fed autism rates.

In 1989, the schedule for administering vaccines changed. Measles, Mumps, Rubella vaccine MMR (3 in one) was introduced and we began to see the rise in children with autism. Physicians who questioned the schedule were categorically considered quacks. Many lost their license to practice or their teaching positions.

In the 1950s, one in 1000 children came down with autism in the U.S. By 2000, the ratio was 1:250. By 2014, the ratio was 1: 68. By 2032, if the rise continues, 1:2 children born will be autistic, including every male child born.

The presenters also drew a link between vaccines and Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) and Shaken Baby Syndrome (SBS). Parents are often blamed rather than the recently given vaccine.

Also interesting was the possible link between Chickenpox vaccine and the rising incidence of Shingles in adults. Formerly, when children contracted chickenpox naturally (a benign disease), they also provided adults around them with a natural booster of chickenpox and protection against shingles. Without the natural exposure, adults become vulnerable to Shingles, a more serious disease.

Frequently cited was the fact that in the years before vaccines were introduced, people woke up to the effects that general hygiene, water sanitation, sanitized food handling, etc., that had reduced disease before vaccines were even produced. So, there is question as to how much vaccines have eliminated and how much illness and death they have caused.

Because controlled, peer reviewed studies have been suppressed; only recently have they begun to be revealed. More studies of Amish children and Home Schooled children who have not received a battery of vaccines need to be encouraged and made openly available to the public.

Sobering news. For many of us, this is a clear wake up call.

Pogo Had It Right!

January 26, 2017

Kurt Vonnegut was a WWII POW in Dresden when US bombs destroyed that beautiful city. He survived the bombing. When he came home, he spent the rest of his life proclaiming to us through his writing: “You’ve got to be kind!”

While it is tempting to find someone to blame for the fear that has gripped the US, I think Walt Kelly’s Pogo had it right: “We have found the enemy and he is us!”

The good news is that all over the US, people are coming together to figure out what we must do to even survive on planet Earth, and be happy in the process. Surveys that document how happy people treat each other are clear on what makes people happier. The overriding concern is that everyone in their country gets a fair share: enough to eat, a roof over their heads, health care, education, and a healthy environment to live in.

It is not that we don’t know what to do. We just do not do it. While the inability to share has been blamed for our dilemma, the root is our avoidance of simple kindness to each other, to everyone.

When we look at all the overlap of the great religions, they seem to be saying the same thing, just in ways that their particular constituents can grasp. Christians have “Do unto others as you would have them do to you.” Buddhists have “If you can’t say something in a way that the other person feels loved, don’t say it.”  Muslims’ Quiran says you should be living not for your own contentment but for God’s contentment with you.  Modern Jews recognize that every religious discipline contributes some insight or value that others cannot grasp. Bottom line is that we’re all in this quest for life together.

And we seem to have been collectively flunking together, and letting down many species of the Earth that need our collective support. The new wave of small groups waking up may well stimulate us to look at our own individual behavior and clean up our acts. What would happen if we each started listening carefully to each other, each started watching the way we speak to each other and the way we speak about others.

Maybe Pogo had it right! Maybe we just need to figure out how to be kind to each other. Research tells us that happy people are healthier. What might it be like to experience happiness spreading out over our families, towns, states, countries, and over the entire world?  It all begins with each of us and it’s all possible IF….

May this be our Happiest New Year ever!

Holiday Feasting Needs Joyful Exercise!

December 15, 2016

Most of us dive into all the sweet treats our favorite people guarantee they will make for the holidays. Yet, our bodies only need a modest amount of sugar, found naturally in fruits and vegetables.

The problem is that the liver converts added sugar into fat and stores it all over the body as a backup fuel for future energy calls unless…. we burn up that extra energy before it has a chance to be stored where we don’t want it.

The hormone, leptin, takes our appetite away when our fat index jumps. However, leptin has no upper limit on fat intake. Actually, when we binge over the holidays, leptin will just see that we keep our fat index as high as we have binged. That index becomes the new normal for leptin and the reason why we pay dues for every binge, unless…. we get creative.

Holiday shopping is a great opportunity. Park well away from the store, theater, or mall entrance and guarantee yourself a good, brisk walk to and from the car. We make better choices when our circulation flushes our whole system and keeps our minds clear while we cash in on surplus energy.

Brisk walks, daily when possible, keep everything moving smoothly. Include a hill and enjoy the benefits of a good sweat to energize your whole system. Enjoy walks, skiing, skating, dancing, or action games while visiting. Is there a park, golf course, woods or field walk near you? Let your joints move, and you will sleep well at night.

Check out wheelchair-freed people. They are the people who use their wheelchairs to go wherever they need to go. I see them slipping in and out of their cars’ driver seats, out doing errands, or heading for work, skiing on ski-chairs or sit-skis. They have strong arms, erect spines, and sharp intellects from years of figuring out new ways to move around smoothly and energetically. In short, they are keeping everything that still moves moving! And they enjoy radiant health.

Check out folks with artificial limbs who figure out ingenious ways to get around and keep themselves maintaining eye contact, standing tall, energized, and in shape. Their persistence and stamina make them inspiring role models for us all.

Better yet, notice what types of exercise leave you feeling refreshed, and indulge yourself!

May this Holiday Season be a happy and energizing one for us all!

‘Each Other’ Includes Donald Trump

November 14, 2016

When we look at the healthiest, happiest countries of the world, such as Scandinavia and Costa Rica, an essential quality their citizens share is a need to see that everyone in their country gets a fair shake, enough to eat, decent living and work opportunities. The         high priority is on Keeping Each Other Well.

Post election, no matter how we voted, we are all responsible to address the problems that stand in the way of present and future health in the U.S.

In the early morning of November 9, I was shocked when this thought went through my mind: I wondered what would happen if we collectively made a goal to enable Donald Trump to be the best president of all time. President-elect Trump said he wanted to be president for All Americans. We all have absolutely nothing to lose by projecting kindness to the extent that President-elect Trump himself begins to emit kindness to all citizens.

Too many people in the United States feel hungry, sick, and hopeless. Too many people are unjustly detained in our prisons, depriving family networks of support systems, depriving us all of a clear conscience. No president can clean up this mess on his own. We lead the world in the percent of our population we imprison.

What would happen if we made it our goal to become the happiest country in the world, when happiness includes and is measured by all our citizens? Will we have the courage to insure that we have open spaces and forests accessible for everyone to tune in to the natural world? Will we save our farmland, our food supply, from final chemical destruction? Will we protect our aquifers and rivers? Will we invest in clean energy that respects First Nations and the natural environment? Will we stimulate ingenious answers to our problems by providing everyone with an exemplary education?

Big job. And it is all possible. People have already begun to organize. Instead of protesting, can we begin to promote, protect, provide, praise, plant, prove, and play?

Will Thanksgiving become a true celebration for all our citizens? Will we be able to give thanks for living in a country that values everyone’s health?

Will we be able to allow ourselves the freedom to make such a Thanksgiving celebration possible?

Change of Seasons Watch

October 27, 2016

I caught the virile virus that recently cut in on us. The virus’ own dance took my breath away doing the Choke. This variation on the theme of strange viruses was relieved only by a fast drink of warm water. Others reported a similar effect.

Change of seasons sets us up for these exchanges when days can’t decide whether to be warm or cold and wind pops up to complicate things. All of a sudden, a migrating bluejay seems to be settling in from the north; the driveway hosts a flock of juncos pecking their hearts away at gravel treasures; and fall’s first pregnant mouse met its demise in the attic trap’s peanut butter lure.

Climate change, international travel, and tensions over possible election results, leave us vulnerable to increasing variations of viruses and flu.

Here are a few things we can do to protect each other from change of season ailments:  Avoid getting chilled. Be prepared for sudden changes in wind and weather by keeping a hat and sweater/fleece and gloves in the car when setting out, even on warm days. Keep everything that still moves moving with regular exercise- walking, doing stairs, lifting weights or whatever exercises we can dream up. Drink plenty of water and eat lots of fruits and vegetables to keep everything moving through our digestive tracts.

If we start to feel the signs that we are coming down with something, it is even more important to keep everything moving, in this case moving on out! Our bodies need easy food to digest, plenty of soups, cooked fruits, hot lemon water, herbal Echinacea teas, and whatever else has worked in the past. We can respect others by not singing, cheering or otherwise forcefully exhaling disease on unsuspecting folks until we know we are fully recovered.

We have had a spectacular fall- a full three weeks of vibrant color that had us all driving more slowly just to take it in. Here’s to a healthy November that inspires us with the true spirit of Thanksgiving for life that we share.

 

Mycelium Miracle Workers

September 28, 2016

Mycology, the language of mushrooms, may well be the language that saves us from ourselves. We have managed to deplete our soils and bring on burgeoning health problems. The threat of more carnage continues.

Macrobiotic folks introduced us to healing mushrooms like Shiitake and Oyster mushrooms. Right now, most of us have no confidence in identifying/selecting the safe mushrooms that abound in our forests. We may think we know Chicken of the Woods, that bright orange-rimmed mushroom growing on trees, but what if we get it home, cook it up and it doesn’t taste like chicken? Oops!

Paul Stamets has a new book out, “Mycelium Running: How mushrooms can help save the world.” The book is an amazing tome, a tribute to mycelium, “the neurological network of nature.” The mycelium is a fungal network of threadlike cells whose fruiting bodies are mushrooms. Fungi create “ever-thickening layers of soil which allow future plant and animal generations to flourish.”

We learn that some forms of oyster mushroom can neutralize soils made toxic with Roundup and other poisonous pesticides that have leached through our soil to infect plants they are designed to protect. When we eat the plants or medications made with plant extracts, we are in fact consuming poisons that make us susceptible to disease.

When friends and I hiked up the Edmands Path to Mt. Eisenhower recently, we moved in wonder at the magic carpet of sphagnum moss (peat) that carpeted much of the forest the higher we hiked. How much easier it was to breath in the dense moisture the mosses held! We could only imagine the massive network of mycelium that made this growth possible. In order to have healthy soil, we need soil that welcomes mycelium, the fungal network that generates robust health in whatever grows above ground.

We need to learn the language of the forest, observe how lightly animals move through. We are not just protecting plants but the extensive mycelium networks that breathe life to the forest and us.

We are called to protect the Earth as never before. The Earth gives us our water, our food, our homes, our recreation, our music, our art, the sciences we study, and the very air we breathe.

Time to think about protecting and restoring soils that nourish all life on Earth.

Glyphosate Continues To Stalk Us In Our Vaccines

September 8, 2016

Despite growing research linking the effects of glyphosate, the key ingredient in Roundup, the most widely used herbicide/pesticide in the world, to our health problems, the EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) has still not acted to take it off the market.

We know that Roundup depletes soils of rich microorganisms and plant diversity by gradually destroying soil nutrients. Proponents claim that Roundup will provide more food to feed the world. However, the world has survived to date through diversity. The reason we plant different varieties of vegetables is to ensure that most of them will survive to reproduce and feed us.

NH Biochemist Anthony Samsel and MIT Senior Research Scientist, Stephanie Seneff pioneer research on the effects of glyphosate on our health. Samsel found glyphosate in the vaccines promoted by multiple labs like Merk and Galaxo Smith Cline. The list included MMR, Proquad MMR, DPT, Hep B, PneumoVax 23, Chickenpox, Shingles, and Influenza.

Measles, Mumps, Rubella, Diptheria, Pertussis, Tetanus, Chickenpox—these are the vaccines given to our children. Shingles and Flu vaccines are targeted for adults.

Seneff researches the effects of glyphosate on our health. Seneff found that Monsanto, producer of glyphosate, initially did comprehensive studies and found that long term exposure to glyphosate caused cancer, endocrine disruptions, bone marrow disruption, and damage to lungs resulting in COPD and Asthma. Monsanto then got the EPA to agree to accept 3 month studies which of course show no problems.

It is the long term effects of Roundup that count. Glyphosate also binds with nitrates in the gut that lead to dementia.

Seneff’s research shows that by 2032, half of the boys born will have autism due to glyphosate, which triggers a manganese deficiency.

Unfortunately, there is much more to the glyphosate story. Depleted soils, destruction of worms and beneficial soil organisms, and more. We now have a derivative of Agent Orange being used to kill the weeds that have become immune to Roundup.

What can we do? For starters, we can go organic as much as possible, check our farm stands to be sure they do not use Roundup, check providers of prepared foods, rethink compulsory vaccines for school children and our use of adult flu vaccines. For more information, visit Seneff’s website: people.csail.mit.edu/seneff.

 

Life Sustaining Health

August 17, 2016

We are definitely in the midst of what Joanna Macy calls The Great Turning. We are smack between the Industrial Revolution and a Life Sustaining Civilization, according to her 2012 book, coauthored with Chris Johnstone, “Active Hope: How to face the mess we’re in without going crazy.”

Four years later, we seem to be right on schedule with the three dimensions of The Great Turning.  Predicted first are Holding Actions: blockades, boycotts and civil disobedience to buy time and save some lives, some ecosystems, some species and cultures. The opposition to the Northern Pass and the Tar Sands Pipeline are but two examples of buying time to protect our health.

This week Kris Pastoriza of Easton became the first Northern Pass civil disobedience arrest stemming from NP bore-hole drilling near waterways in Easton. Pastoriza sat on a bore-hole site near the Ham Branch River, preventing the drilling rig from being unloaded there. After her arrest, NP bored in a location that the Easton Select Board had requested not be bored. The contaminated mess NP left behind is still being investigated.

Macy’s second step, Structural Change, brings in new economies and new ways of being together. Local Food Movements, the spread of Permaculture farming practices, Food Labeling activists, Transition towns like Florida’s Babcock Ranch (new), and Rutland, Vermont (now on solar), demonstrate these changes.

Finally, we experience a Shift in Consciousness. New forms of thought are happening. There is a profound shift in our perception of reality, what we must do if we want our offspring to get along with the rest of the world, thrive and survive. All of which leads to a spiritual awakening to the importance of all life forms and a new means of communication.

Other life forms are attuned to each other and jockey around us to survive. Tiny bacteria might be more powerful than all our human intuition and learning. We need to become fluent in other species languages to be able to work together so that life on Earth may continue for us all.

Challenges continue. In our area, the Northern Pass has dragged on for six years, despite massive opposition. This week, we learned that Massachusetts enacted a new utilities law that essentially sells that state’s rights to centralized corporate energy. Utilities there can now legally collect up to 2.75 percent from ratepayers to offset  the costs of long-term contracts for hydro-power or offshore wind. This is a step back to 20th century technology, definitely not a form of future cheap energy. This smacks of a similar ripoff deal HydroQuebec managed almost 40 years ago with Newfoundland over Churchill Falls energy. That whole sad story is available on the internet.

As water scarcity accelerates, we also need to keep alert to protect our water supply, to save our trees that store water for us, and release it to the atmosphere for our benefit as well. Visitors from the West and South and abroad marvel at the luxury of breathing deep in our forests, and how good it is to be able to smell the vegetation!

It is up to each of us to do our part in this shift to a Life Sustaining Civilization. We can join community efforts that support our Forest Society, Permaculture gardeners, Farmers Markets, and new forms of energy. We can write to Governor Hassan and our legislators. All that we each do counts.