What Kind of Hungry are You?

What kind of hungry are you when the brain says, “EAT!”?

Photo illustration of The What Kind of Hungry Brain

What Kind of Hungry are You When You’re Hungry?

Here’s a recent Tweet: Simple principles for #weight control & #health 334: Exercise your muscles and your will power. Both are easily re-trained with practice.

For the past couple of years I’ve been studying the strange ways the brain works. Not one of us thinks the way we think we think. (Here’s a good example:Thinking Fast and Slow by Daniel Kahneman; Farrar, Straus and Giroux; Reprint edition (April 2, 2013))

The brain plays tricks on us all day every day. As concerns what we eat, there are three kinds of hunger, but the brain will calculate each one to mean we need food. It ain’t so.

What Kind of Hungry are You?

Nutritional hunger stems from the nervous system, carrying the message from trillions of cells that they are hungry for what feeds them. Amino acids, minerals, and vitamins that come from whole foods is what they’re looking for. If you continually eat foods that do not provide them, you will continue to feel hungry, and then overeat. Think junk foods and sugary snacks. they never satisfy your real hunger.

The second kind of hunger is emotional hunger, triggered within the brain, mostly as a response to circumstances. We reach for comfort foods when we feel insecure or threatened. You may get a quick fix through a sugar rush for instance, but you’re not truly feeding your body, you’re more likely to leave it less healthy.
The third kind of hunger is habitual. When the clock strikes 12:00 Noon, you eat. When you get home from work or school you have a snack or dinner or both, whether you’re truly in need of nutrition or not.

Brain training is trusting that your body is smarter than you think. Pay attention and your body will tell you when you need to eat and it will give you excellent feedback on what you choose to eat. Grab a handful of coated chocolate candies, you know the ones that have become cartoon characters, and you’ll get a sugar rush, but you’ll also feel a significant letdown in about 15 minutes. You’ll feel tired, more than the workload warrants. On the other hand, if you keep some berries, nuts, and veggies around to snack on, you’ll enjoy the freshness of the flavors and will feel more energized.

Start training your brain now. Understand your hunger. You’ll become better at it, be healthier, and have a shot at controlling your weight the easy way.

Now that I’ve mentioned it, what kind of hungry are you and what do you think?

What Do you Do with a Seed Catalog?

What do you do with a seed catalog? Be careful as you watch our little happy dance. It may be contagious. The celebration gets the feet going when the mailbox reveals—the seed catalog.

What Do you Do with a Seed Catalog? Illustrationa

What Do you Do with a Seed Catalog? Make a plan and grow with it.

Gardening can be fun, entertaining, rewarding and a boost to family economics. Even urban apartment dwellers can grow quite a bit in containers. We have heard about amazing innovations that make it possible. More space gives more opportunity. How much space? Lees than you might think.

Mel Bartholomew’s name may be familiar. On television, he’s the Square Foot Gardner, offering ideas and suggestions for everything from a one-person container garden to a full-fledged community garden. His ideas worked for us in our patio home. He suggests raised beds in 4’ by 4’ frames. Our neighborhood restrictions caused us to use 3’ by 3’ frames, but we were able to squeeze in four of them. The approach keeps us from over-planting, but we still had sufficient produce in some varieties to share with the neighbors.

Check out Square Foot Gardening online, or get yourself a copy of the book. Click the picture. It will help you plan, but do it quickly with winter winding down and spring approaching.

Our little happy dance will not be quite as happy this year, even though the arrival of the Sow True Seed Catalog brought a thrill. Many of our readers know we’re from North Carolina, but this year we sold the place, moved to the Southwest, and plan to move again before the seeds would produce any veggies. So, if we order any seeds, it will be a few and later in the season. Nevertheless, we’re thinking about the veggies, herbs, and flowers we would like to be ordering.

For five years now, we have been mentored in garden practices by Bartholomew and a few others, but we have relied heavily on the fine folks at Sow True Seed, based in Asheville, NC. Founded in 2008 by lifelong gardener and food activist, Carol Koury, the company serves as a beehive of activity, supplying home gardeners and small market farmers in a unique way.

The product line includes open-pollinated and heirloom seeds for organic veggies, herbs, and flowers. Koury envisions “empowering individuals to become more self-sustainable and less dependent on multi-national food corporations which may not have our best interests in mind.” The company chooses to be a signatory of the Safe Seed Pledge put out by the Council of Responsible Genetics, not knowingly selling any GMO seed. You can buy and grow organically.

In Florida and SoCal, you’re already into the growing season. The rest of us will need to get the seed starters going in a few days or weeks at the most. So, get your catalog, do a little happy dance, and then dig in to make your list. (Pardon the pun.)

Why Open-Pollinated?

Seeds that will grow true to type, because they have been protected from crossing with other types, will maintain their genetic strength and diversity. Saved and stored properly, they will faithfully reproduce from year to year and are more likely to readily adapt in a variety of climates.

Why Heirloom?

Many varieties have been handed down from generation to generation and display outstanding qualities. Many pre-date the introduction of cross-pollination which “Big Agriculture” produces as hybrids. The true seed will more likely reproduce dependably with known characteristics each year, making your gardening more sustainable.

Why non-GMO?

Without jumping headlong into the politics of food, we state a belief that our bodies respond to nature and natural substances. Many man-made attempts to improve upon nature have introduced items that appear to have toxic results. We believe this to be true about seeds in particular. GMO’s (Genetically Modified Organisms) have been banned by some countries and have never been researched sufficiently to ensure their safety over generations. Patented seeds and processes have served manufacturers well with huge profits from, not just the sale of seeds, but from monopolistic practices with regard to royalties and legal protections. Oops, maybe I got into the politics of food a bit anyway. Suffice it to say, we believe in non-GMO seeds as well as non-GMO end products on store shelves.

What Do you Do with a Seed Catalog?

You may pull several seed catalogs out of your mailbox. As a child, I watched my grandfather pore over the pages, looking for new varieties for the flower garden, perennial favorites for the veggie plot, and tips and suggestions to make the work more efficient and more effective. The catalog and a copy of The Old Farmer’s Almanac guided the selections and the timing each year. We ate well. We ate fresh. We shared with the neighbors. It was good.

We wish the same for you. Happy gardening and be well!

Come on People, Come Clean about Clean Eating

Come on People, Come Clean about Clean Eating

So much confusion reigns about clean eating and getting healthy.

I see

  • professional dietitians promoting empty-calorie packaged foods,
  • nutritionists encouraging the use of high-sugar fruits for caloric energy, and
  • fitness instructors reminding clients to “beef up” with a high protein diet.

These instructions and suggestions may encourage individuals to move away from the Standard American Diet (SAD) that is 90% packaged foods and animal protein, which most people need to change. However; for anyone that has been diagnosed with a disease, or for folks who want to prevent disease and boost immunity, each one of these approaches has been proved to be ineffective or even dangerous. They’re not even necessarily effective for simple weight control over the long-term. That makes it not very clean at all. You know what? We count some of these professional mis-instructionists as friends.

Poster:Come on People, Come Clean about Clean Eating

Come on People, Come Clean about Clean Eating

Why Do We Have Clean Eating Confusion?

We wonder what these people learn in school. And then, we think they must stop reading the latest research when they graduate. Are we confusing you further? Sorry, we learned through having disease that getting back to being healthy can be accomplished. It takes developing a new mindset on two topics, understanding that health comes through 1) clean eating, which means better food habits and improving our decisions about the food we eat, and 2) exercise, even gentle body movement for disadvantaged people. Take control of these two in your life and you can kick disease’s butt, stay healthy, and get into the weight range you really want. We’ve done it, you can too. If you are a Twitter follower of Veggie_1, or you follow our daily tips on Facebook, or subscribe to the web site at www.eatdrinkandgoveggie.com, you know these things already. If so, I’m preaching to the choir and you already agree with the principles. But, how do we further spread the word? What’s your best suggestion? If we do a newsletter, complete with meal plans and recipes, will it help you? Will it make it easy for you to help us spread the word to others who need to hear it’s possible to make good changes in life? Respond here, or send us an email at veggie1@eatdrinkandgoveggie.com. Give us some feedback, now, while you’re thinking about it.

Moving Toward the Truth

Help us out here. What do you think? A wholesome plant-based diet that consists of whole, live foods really works. It even tastes great once you learn to put the combinations together with your favorite herbs and spices. Once your palette gets used to it, in about ten days, you’ll begin to enjoy flavors you forgot existed. Food preparation becomes much simpler, your grocery bill stays about the same or improves, and you’ll fall in love with food again. What the mis-instructionists teach improves diet for a few people in the short-term, but makes some dangerous suggestions as well. There’s a better way to improve your lifestyle, get healthy, stay healthy, and enhance the quality of your life. So here’s the bottom line: how do we reach more people and encourage more people to make the few simple steps it takes to live better? If you were in our shoes, disappointed with all the mis-information and trying to get better information out, what would you do?

Graphic of a Newsletter Header

What Would You Do? Will a Newsletter Help Spread the Word?

Clean Eating does exist and it does work. By eliminating the 8 KILLER FOODS and embracing a new food lifestyle, anyone can see improvement. Isn’t that exciting? If you’re like me, having had a heart attack 26 years ago and beating cancer 5 years later, it’s absolutely thrilling. Maybe you have a similar story. Maybe you know some friends who need to hear these stories of success with habit change and getting healthy results. Let us know what you think.

We’d love to hear from you. Respond here or send us email at veggie1@eatdrinkandgoveggie.com. We’re eager to hear from you.If you do think a newsletter might be a good idea, why don’t you just go ahead and let us know by completing this contact form.

Thanks and be well!

Steve Cooper, Veggie_1

How to Beat the Flu Bug May Surprise You

How to Beat the Flu Big May Surprise You

What’s bugging you may not be the flu, and even if it is, the cure may be worse than the flu. Read more…

How to Beat the Flu Bug May Surprise You. If you watch TV, read billboards, or encounter any other advertising medium, including each social media platform, you know we’re in the worst flu season ever. Well, maybe, but we doubt it. Unfortunately, too many believe the message and much of what we hear turns out to be pure hype! What you don’t know about the flu can be dangerous to you and your family!

These three articles will show you how to beat the flu bug, or what’s worse, the hype about the flu.

When have you experienced the murky practice of diagnosing and prescribing for a bug? How did that work for you?

If you need more suggestions, just ask.

Be well!