“The true hypocrite is the one who ceases to perceive his deception, the one who lies with sincerity.” Andre Gide
He will use every kind of wicked deception to fool those who are on their way to destruction because they refuse to believe the truth that would save them. (2 Thess. 2:10; NLT)
Deception — it’s been with us since the Garden of Eden. There has been progress, however. It’s now become permissible and expected to deceive — all in the name of good marketing. Lest we fall into the trap of throwing the baby out with the bathwater, not all marketing is deceptive. Good marketing and good salesmanship seeks to assist people in solving their problems. Bad marketing and bad sales practices tend to create problems. “There’s a sucker born every minute” according to P. T. Barnum.
What if someone wants to believe the deception? Is it still deception? That line of thinking leads down a very interesting rabbit hole and is perhaps fodder for a future DG, but not today. This whole line of thinking is to encourage you to read the article on food marketing deception at the following link.
You know, there’s one simple rule that will forever serve you and protect you from the kind of egregious deception the article is addressing. In a nutshell, anytime you hear a label or an advertisement make claims that the processed item is better than the God-made original, turn around and run! It just ain’t so!
Maybe … just maybe, the person responsible for the deceptive claim believes that it is actually true. Then who has been deceived? You or the person reciting the deception. That’s another rabbit hole, but the bottom line is that if you fall for it, you are the one who is the ultimate loser. Man cannot outdo God at being God.
Father, grant us the wisdom and discernment to recognize when we’re being deceived. Give us the grace to resist the temptation, no matter how attractive.
Link of the Day
How To Avoid Food Marketing Deception
Photo by fudj
“But Andreas Spath, PhD, an expert in the field of geochemistry, says that biofuels are actually worse for the environment than conventional fossil fuels are.” Ethan Huff
They ate up everything green in the land, destroying all the crops. (Ps. 105:35; NLT)
Don’t be put off by the title of today’s Daily Gram. Stay with me…you’ll learn some very interesting information.
I recall of first learning about “fossil fuels” years ago when battling “Environmental Illness” or chemical sensitivities. At that time I was told that fossil fuels were anything that burned such as coal, oil, or natural gas. I was also told that they were harmful to someone with chemical sensitivities. That was about the extent of my knowledge of fossil fuels up until a few years ago when we began hearing about Biofuels.
Biofuels sounded so “healthy.” Their use could limit greenhouse gas emissions, create a greener tomorrow, and even decrease dependence on foreign oil. However, I just learned that an expert in the field of geochemistry named Andreas Spath, Ph.D., says that biofuels are actually worse for the environment than conventional fossil fuels are.
What! This caught my attention. Apparently, since biofuels are renewable, largely plant-based and work right now in existing vehicles, proponents say they are an excellent alternative to fossil fuels.
But in reality, Dr. Spath says, “Biofuel production requires massive amounts of land to produce additional fuel crops, and the entire growing, harvesting and refining process ends up ruining the environment and causing more greenhouse gas production than if the world simply continued on with fossil fuels. And biofuel production has also increased food prices across the board.”
He gives the example of corn ethanol which has shifted much of the U.S. corn production away from food crops and towards fuel crops. This has resulted in increased food prices, as the monetary incentive to grow biofuel corn is higher than it is to grow food corn. The same is true for sugar, soy, and other crops used around the world for biofuels.
He also quotes a study done in 2007 comparing fossil fuels to biofuels. It found that, “because of the chemical fertilizers used, biofuel production end up releasing twice as much greenhouse gas as fossil fuels do. The study actually found that continuing with conventional diesel production is better for the environment.”
Just some food to fuel your thought processes.
Father, we continually thank You for wisdom and understanding in all areas of our lives.
Links of the Day
Photo by Daniel_Bauer
“Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn’t go away.” Phillip K. Dick
He forgives all my sins and heals all my diseases. (Psa. 103:3; NLT)
“What’s a silver bullet?” some of you may ask. Dictionary.com gives several answers including, “a quick solution to a difficult problem; very effective, almost magical remedy; a specific, fail-safe solution to a problem.” As you might expect, I’m going to use the term in relation to health and wellness.
What if I told you that there was a “silver bullet” on the horizon that would (among other things):
- Make you more intelligent, happier, and successful
- Double the survival rates of breast cancer patients
- Significantly strengthen your body’s immune system
- Overcome depression without the use of antidepressants (at the same rate of those who use antidepressants exclusively)
- Be remarkably effective in relieving symptoms of depression and anxiety
- Enhance your self-esteem
- Produce more restful sleep
- Help you recover more quickly from adversity
- Help you to better cope with social stress
- Significantly enhance your children’s performance on aptitude exams in reading and mathematics
- Provide protection against the common cold, flu, and bacterial infections
- Improve your ability to think quickly, focus, be creative, and solve problems
- Provide anti-aging at the cellular level
- Reduce your likelihood of suffering a stroke
- Prevent and treat osteoporosis
- Help manage diabetes
- Promote healthier digestion
- Reduce your aches and pains
- Contribute to your optimism and having a positive mindset
Would you agree with me that any one thing that can do all that (and more) would qualify to be labeled a “silver bullet?”
What if I told you that I was lying? It’s not on the horizon. It’s already here. It’s actually been here for your entire lifetime. And like the quote above suggests, whether you believe it or not, whether you use it or not, it’s not going to go away.
I hate to be a tease, but I’m not going to tell you what that silver bullet is until my next Daily Gram. But it might be fun to see how many of our readers can guess (or maybe even know for sure) what it is. Come on now — take a shot. Put your best guess in the comment box below. Let’s see how many of you can guess it correctly.
Father, sometimes we tend to make things a whole lot harder than they need to be — or certainly a whole lot harder than You intended the to be for us. Forgive us for overlooking the obvious.
Link of the Day
Photo by Yarden Sachs
“What all this information points to is that exercise is not a silver bullet — it’s platinum.” Bill Phillips
Now, as you can see, the LORD has kept me alive and well as he promised for all these forty-five years since Moses made this promise– even while Israel wandered in the wilderness. Today I am eighty-five years old. I am as strong now as I was when Moses sent me on that journey, and I can still travel and fight as well as I could then. (Josh. 14:10, 11; NLT)
I’m about halfway through a fascinating book by Bill Phillips, titled Transformation. I have to confess that the idea for this Daily Gram and of course, the previous one as well, came from the pages of this outstanding new book.
Anyway, the cat’s out of the bag. As you can tell from Phillips’ quote above, the silver bullet I was describing in the last DG was exercise. I know — I know. I can hear the groans from here. It’s that dreadful “E-word” again.
But I do have to ask, what is so dreadful about some thing that will do all (and more) of the things I listed in my previous DG without the never-ending list of side effects of the pharmaceutical alternative? Besides that, it’s free! Robert Sallis, M.D. has been quoted as saying, “Exercise can be used like a vaccine to prevent disease and a medication to treat it. If there were a drug with the same benefits as working out, it would instantly be the standard of care.”
From reading Phillips’ book, I learned of a group of doctors and health care professionals which calls on physicians to assess and review each patient’s physical activity levels at every visit. EIM believes that doctors should prescribe exercise to their patients just as they would any other medicine. I’ve put the link to their web site as today’s Link of the Day. Check it out.
Phillips writes, “Every week you don’t get up and move for a few hours (walking, weight lifting, jogging) takes you another step closer to heart disease, diabetes, hypertension, cancer, depression, arthritis, and osteoporosis.”
How much plainer does it have to get? See ya at the gym???
Father, among the incredible gifts you have given us is the ability to move. You designed us to move. When we don’t move, it’s just like an abandoned automobile. Some parts start to rust, some start to rot, and others just generally fall apart. You also gave us the ability to make choices. We thank You for your amazing design.
Link of the Day
Exercise is Medicine
Photo by strange_customs
“Aluminum utensils, aluminum foil and other aluminum containers all pose a risk for aluminum absorption into foods. Aluminum colanders pose a risk for contamination of pasta. Cooking food in aluminum foil leaches the aluminum out of the foil and into the foods, especially into meat gravies and tomato gravies. Baking potatoes in aluminum foil may encourage aluminum absorption in the skins of the potatoes.” Health and Nutrition Secrets by Dr. Russell Blaylock
The words of the godly lead to life; evil people cover up their harmful intentions. (Prov. 10:11; NLT)
My recent Daily Gram on the dangers of aluminum prompted a question from a long-time friend. “Sharon, what type of cookie sheets do you recommend in light of the info on aluminum? Also, is aluminum foil bad to wrap things in?”
Good questions, friend. Once I replied to the email, I wondered if others might benefit from this same information. Since I’ve been walking the natural health road for such a long time, I tend to lose sight of the fact that others might benefit from things I’ve done for years.
With regard to baking…I stopped using all of my aluminum cookie sheets, cake pans, bread pans, and pie plates when I first started battling for my health in the mid 1980’s. I was able to replace the baking sheets, cake pans, and bread pans with ones made of stainless steel. I switched to using glass pie plates. At that time, stainless steel bake ware was available even though it was far more costly than aluminum. However, we know that using aluminum bake ware is MUCH more costly in the long run due to it’s inherent toxicity.
As I’ve looked through the years for stainless steel bake ware for others, I discovered that it wasn’t always readily available and sometimes, nowhere to be found. However, I’m happy to say that I located some on Amazon that seems very reasonable. Yes, it does cost more than mine did in the 80’s…but what else is the same price as it was then?
In answer to my friend’s second question — No, I never wrap food in aluminum foil. I store as much food as possible in glass containers or jars. If I put leftovers in a bowl that has no lid, I cover it with a plate rather than use foil or plastic wrap. If there is an absolute need to wrap food in plastic wrap or foil, I first wrap it in unbleached wax paper, and then use the foil or plastic wrap. That way the food is in direct contact with the waxed paper and not the foil. Here is what the waxed paper looks like.
Another possibility for baking sheets are ones made of stoneware. I also located one on Amazon as an example.
Pampered Chef also offers stoneware baking items. I have a large baking stone that I’ve used but I’ve not used the stoneware cookie sheets. Many cooks really like their baking stones.
So, rather than get discouraged about what you can’t or shouldn’t use in the kitchen, let’s be thankful that we have healthy options.
Father, thank You for our many readers and we pray great blessings on them this day.
Link of the Day
Stainless steel bakeware
Photo by Sharon
“Women who consume trans fatty acids weigh more than women who do not consume trans fats, even though caloric intake is the same.” Dr. Mary Enig
They brought sleeping mats, cooking pots, serving bowls, wheat and barley flour, roasted grain, beans, lentils, honey, butter, sheep, and cheese for David and those who were with him. (2 Samuel 17: 28, 29; NLT)
Most all of our readers know about the dangers of eating trans fats. (See, for example, the article I wrote 3 years ago titled “Is Margarine A Health Food?“) However, in case there may be some who are still wondering exactly what they are or why they’re bad for us, let me give you a little background. A recent newsletter I receive highlighted one of Dr. Mary Enig’s articles on trans fats.
According to the article, “Trans fatty acids are a type of fat molecule produced by a process called ‘partial hydrogenation,’ which rearranges the hydrogen atoms in liquid unsaturated fatty acids to produce an unnatural fat, which, like saturated fat is solid at room temperature.” There is much more to the actual chemical process that is explained in the article. I find the information fascinating but for most readers that kind of detail acts as a great sleep aid, so I’ll forgo the science and move on.
Suffice it to say, eating trans fats will wreak havoc with your health. This article presents several dangers. The first one listed was:
- Cancer — many studies indicate increased cancer risk from eating trans fats due to how trans fats interfere with enzymes the body uses to protect itself against cancer. I’m sure most of us have heard that margarine and other trans fats are bad for our health, but I didn’t realize the connection between eating trans fats and cancer development.
- Diabetes — trans fats interfere with the insulin receptors in cell membranes which triggers Type II diabetes.
- Heart Disease — trans fats increase levels of atherogenic lipoprotein-a.
- Immune Function — trans fats interfere with B cell and T cell function which decreases immune response.
- Fertility and Reproduction — trans fats interfere with enzymes needed to produce sex hormones and they decrease testosterone levels in male animals and increase the level of abnormal sperm.
- Lactation — eating trans fats lowers the overall fat content in mother’s milk, compromising the nourishment to the infant. Trans fats can also cross the mammary gland into mother’s milk and interfere with neurological and visual development of the infant.
- Growth and Development — trans fats cross the placenta causing low birth weight and other problems for the baby.
- And the last danger mentioned was the one that most grabbed my attention. “Women who consume trans fatty acids weigh more than women who do not consume trans fats, even though caloric intake is the same.”
So, even if you’re not convinced that eating trans fats are deleterious to your health, avoiding them could help you to weigh less. And that my friend is good news!
Father, we are grateful for women such as Mary Enig who has done so much to educate on the dangers of eating unnatural fats and oils. Bless her this day and encourage our readers to avoid eating trans fats.
Photo by Mr. T in DC
This is just a quick DG to let you know that Sharon was recently interviewed by Lois Gallo, a well-known local personality and entrepreneur. Lois recently started a new Internet radio series which she calls “Heart and Power Radio.”
About her new radio outlet Lois writes,
“These special radio conversations we bring you are glimpses into the lives of everyday people in the Hampton Roads area who have experienced the touch of God’s great Love and the amazing Power that flows out to make sense of even the worst things that can happen in life. They are here to share their stories and insights in the hope that you will see God revealed in another facet played out through the stages of their lives in this world, however ordinary they may seem!”
Have a great weekend!
“Vegetarian – that’s an old Indian word meaning ‘lousy hunter.'” Andy Rooney
Every moving thing that lives shall be food for you. I have given you all things, even as the green herbs. (Gen. 9:3; NKJV)
It’s a long story, but when I first met Sharon, she was a vegetarian. I wasn’t! But she wasn’t the kind of vegetarian who just ate a bunch of bland vegetables. No, she was a gourmet cook who had this magnificent gift of being able to make everything taste good. So it didn’t take her very long to make a convert out of me. (Remember that old saw about the way to a man’s heart being through his stomach. It’s absolutely true!)
So then, for a period of many years, we were vegetarians, and pretty strict about it, as well. During this period of time, Sharon’s health broke down due to some chemical poisoning (another long, long story that many of you have heard), and one of the suggestions she got from a number of sources was to begin to introduce some meat back into her diet.
Then as her body became stronger, she went back to mostly vegetarian, which is how we ate until relatively recently. As we reminisced about it a couple of days ago, she said that we were probably vegetarian more than not during our 28 married years.
But then we gradually started to reintroduce meat back into our diet in a very limited fashion. Fish occasionally; chicken or turkey occasionally. Beef, hardly ever. Pork, never. We both discovered that with a small amount of meat in our diet, we felt better. We seemed to have more energy, and just generally felt better. And that’s pretty much where we are today.
I tell you all this as a backdrop for an incredible article that Mike Geary sent out last week. He introduced the article with the following: “This is probably one of the most fascinating articles I’ve ever read…It digs into not only the nutritional problems that this blogger had with her veganism, but also goes deep into the emotional and mental struggles that she was dealing with…as well as the scrutiny from the vegan community. Read this article to see how this particular woman almost destroyed her health by being a vegan.” (The article is today’s Link of the Day.)
Like Mike, I found the article fascinating, to say the least, but also very enlightening. I share it with you not to make a statement one way or another about being a vegetarian, but simply to offer you the opportunity to see “the other side” of a sometimes controversial issue.
To me, the lesson in all this is balance — and the obvious lesson that everybody is different. Another lesson that can and should be learned from this story is that dogmatism is dangerous. Don’t let yourself fall into that trap.
Father, once again we thank You for your guidance and grace to make the choices which reflect Your wisdom
Link of the Day
A Former Vegan Confesses All
Photo by John C Abell
“Diatomaceous earth also has many health benefits due to its mineral content, which consists of about 85% amorphous silica and approximately 20 trace minerals.” Natural News
When I had lost all hope, I turned my thoughts once more to the LORD. And my earnest prayer went out to you in your holy Temple. (Jonah 2:7; NLT)
Many of our readers are animal lovers! We also enjoy animals but for a number of reasons have never had indoor pets. However we have long-time and dear friends who really “love” their animals. We’ve known them to have had any number of dogs, cats, ferrets, turtles, and even birds throughout the years.
Several months ago, their hearts overruled common sense (our opinion) and they brought a new member into their family. George is a Harlequin Great Dane standing about 3 feet tall and weighing in at 140 pounds. George thinks he’s a lap dog even though he’s the size of small pony. Anyway, this post really isn’t about George or about dogs at all. But because George developed fleas, his “parents” discovered diatomaceous earth and have since been educating me on this topic. I’ve done a little bit of reading on it and just noticed that NaturalNews.com also did a recent post. It’s fascinating stuff.
“Diatomaceous Earth is made from fossilized water plants and is a natural occurring siliceous sedimentary mineral compound from the remains of algae-like plants called diatoms. The plants have been part of earth’s ecology system dating back to prehistoric times. The chalky deposits the diatoms left are called diatomite, the diatoms are mined and ground up to make a powder that has a look and feel much like talcum powder.”
Natural News adds, “The sharp points found on fossilized diatom exoskeletons create a safe and non-toxic strong abrasive that scrubs intestinal walls and cuts up any parasites present in the digestive tract. Additionally, as it passes the digestive tract, it attracts and absorbs pathogens such as bacteria, viruses, protozoa, and fungi. It also absorbs and removes pesticides, heavy metals, and drug residues.
Diatomaceous earth also has many health benefits due to its mineral content, which consists of about 85% amorphous silica and approximately 20 trace minerals. The silica in diatomaceous earth is effective in preventing premature aging. Silica can also make age spots fade and also help to repair and maintain lung tissue elasticity.”
Other health benefits listed were lowering of blood pressure and elevated cholesterol levels, relieving joint pain and fostering healthier hair, skin, teeth, gums and nails. Even though the above benefits refer to humans, diatomaceous earth also provides similar benefits to animals. Of course, that’s how this Daily Gram began. (Actually our friends make use of another of the many benefits of diatomaceous earth, i.e., they rub the diatomaceous earth on George’s coat to ward off fleas and ticks.)
Father, we are so grateful for the wisdom and knowledge that You give us. We are continually thankful for the natural and safe things that You provid for us to take care of ourselves and our animals.
Link of the Day
Diatomaceous Earth – food grade powder
Photo by Kusse
“Opportunity is not a door to door salesman, it will not pester you until you finally give in and accept its amazing one-time-only offer. Opportunity might come knocking once in your lifetime, you might be out or you might not hear the door. What then?” Karl Warren
Live wisely among those who are not Christians, and make the most of every opportunity. Col. 4:5; NLT)
Like so many other things, you must be looking before you will find. If you want opportunity, you must go looking for it. It is always there, but as today’s quote so clearly articulates, it will rarely come to you screaming and hollering for your attention. Unfortunately, too many people are far too passive when it comes to opportunity.
We’re living in a time and economic situation when people tend to give up as they are thinking it will never get any better. (Today’s unemployment rate is a fraction of what it truly is because it doesn’t take into consideration those who are no longer looking for a job. They gave up!)
Guess what. For anyone who thinks that way, it won’t get any better. However, history has shown that it’s times like this when the greatest number of millionaires are made. Now you may not aspire to be a millionaire, and that is OK, but that is no reason to give up and quit. The opportunities to be whatever you want to be are there. Always there. Now, even more than ever before.
A friend and colleague recently sent me a short little piece which effectively is a short course to teach you how to find opportunities by asking the right questions of yourself and others. Remember, questions are always the answer. Another key to remember is that “why” questions are hardly ever as effective as “how” questions. On the other hand, “why not” questions can be very powerful as today’s Link of the Day points out.
Please don’t miss today’s link. It’s very short, and very profound…and very powerful.
Father, help us to see that it is never too late nor never hopeless. Teach us to ask the right questions.
Link of the Day
Million Dollar Briefcase
Photo by By Guerrilla Futures | Jason Tester