Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Zookra - More from My Strange Garden

I'm aware of Jim Paredes' Writing on Air but have you heard of writing on helium?

That's when I submitted an article (below) to Helium, a creative writing site which challenged me to reflect on Food. Helium says there's money in writing! Not a lot of gas I hope. I better ask Jim:) Check it out here.

I wrote the short piece for about half an hour, just noting down what fragmented thoughts lingered. The helium community has still to rate me. I might get an F:) Anyway I developed the article further here.


Of course I'm not what I contradict that old saying.Food nourishes, that's all. Beef won't turn someone into a cow (hmm maybe?:-) nor did I see any bovine turn into grass.

Well I guess it's just a motherly advice. Eat good food and you'll stay in good health; eat junk and you get a wasted feeling. Limp..both mind and body.

Eat's good for you! Drink cranberry, you'll live forever! Eat fish, less pork! Nothing wrong with me , I just lac tose:)

I've accumulated a number of health emails harking benefits for mankind. I feel a kind of health advice fatigue. My dopamines hesitate when I have to watch everything I put in my mouth. Mind you some people don't eat anything at all like some fakirs in India. They only gulp air and last for months! I gasped, they eat air? Air in, air out.. would passing wind levitate them a metre high?:) Meditation or not it defies logic.

Eat natural is best I guess. No engine oil for me, only olive! No fake nor real sugar at all, only nice and sticky Australian honey! They're cheap, you'll be surprised.

I grew up with rice, hot and steamy in sticky Manila. Did I hear someone say: Bad for you, too much carbs! Aw leave me alone I say. You just throw in a smoked mackerel and some sliced tomato and you're sated, with a bit of ripe, mango juice on the side. Omega 3 never had it so good.

Third world diet is quite nutritious and easily prepared. Asian meals are satisfying, too with all the noodly soup opera that abound. Food is main concern of the world. Now with Al Gore and the Global Warming issue getting hotter, there should be some relevance in the way we traffic and prepare food. To feed the world is a massive responsibility and to fuel all those cooking pans surely contributes to our temperature-sensitive times. Maybe sushi is the answer so as not to feel guilty turning on that electric grill, or maybe microwave ovens might do without bothering all those fossil underneath.

Alas I'd have a change of heart if this present summer heat fries me to death and make me stop eating fried food! On my tombstone: "He was what he ate."

Meanwhile while I'm still alive and kicking I'll just eat what's good for me. Here's what nutritionist Sylvia Zook had to say about okra. This inspired me to create Zookra, the wonder okra! So take heed guys. She's a nice lady.
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Subject: Okra

A guy had been suffering from constipation for the past 20 years and recently from acid reflux. He didn't realize that the treatment could be so simple -- OKRA!

He started eating okra within the last 2 months and since then have never taken medication again. All he did was eat 6 pieces of OKRA everyday. He's now regular and his blood sugar has dropped from 135 to 98,with his cholesterol and acid reflux also under control.

Here are some facts on okra (from the research of Ms. Sylvia Zook, PH.D (nutrition), University of Illinois.

Okra is a powerhouse of valuable nutrients, nearly half of which is soluble fiber in the form of gums and pectins. Soluble fiber helps to lower serum cholesterol, reducing the risk of heart disease. The other half is insoluble fiber which helps to keep the intestinal tract healthy, decreasing the risk of some forms of cancer, especially colo-rectal cancer.

Nearly 10% of the recommended levels of vitamin B6 and folic acid is also present in a half cup of cooked okra. Okra is a rich source of many nutrients, including fiber, vitamin B6 and folic acid. He got the following numbers from the University of Illinois Extension Okra Page.

Please check there for more details.Okra Nutrition (half-cup cooked okra)* Calories = 25* Dietary Fiber = 2 grams* Protein = 1.5 grams* Carbohydrates = 5.8 grams* Vita! min A = 460 IU* Vitamin C = 13 mg* Folic acid = 36.5 micrograms* Calcium = 50 mg* Iron = 0.4 mg* Potassium = 256 mg* Magnesium = 46 mg

These numbers should be used as a guideline only, and if you are on a medically-restricted diet please consult your physician and/or dietician.

Ms Sylvia W. Zook, Ph.D. (nutritionist) has very kindly provided the following thought-provoking comments on the many benefits of this versatile vegetable.

They are well worth reading.

1. The superior fiber found in okra helps to stabilize blood sugar as it curbs the rate at which sugar is absorbed from the intestinal tract.

2. Okra's mucilage not only binds cholesterol but bile acid carrying toxins dumped into it by the filtering liver. But it doesn't stop there...

3. Many alternative health practitioners believe all disease begins in the colon. The okra fiber, absorbing water and ensuring bulk in stools, helps prevent constipation. Fiber in general is helpful for this but okra is one of the best, along with ground flax seed and psyllium. Unlike harsh wheatbran, which can irritate or injure the intestinal tract, okra's mucilage soothes, and okra facilitates elimination more comfortably by its slippery characteristic many people abhor. In other words, this incredibly valuable vegetable not only binds excess cholesterol and toxins (in bile acids) which cause numerous health problems, if not evacuated, but also assures their easy passage from the the body.

4. Further contributing to the health of the intestinal tract, okra fiber(as well as flax and psyllium) has no equal among fibers for feeding the good bacteria (probiotics).

5.To retain most of okra's nutrients and self-digesting enzymes , it should be cooked as little as possible, e.g. with low heat or lightly steamed. Some eat it raw.

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At Friday, March 2, 2007 at 10:26:00 PM GMT+11 , Blogger elmer said...

okra addict i shall.


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