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January 16th, 2009

There is different kind of “food”

We all need to take out of our system the very in-digestive anguish, sub product of concerns about money, debt, maintaining a job, finding a new job, our kids, school, our partners and their jobs, parents…etc, etc. All these items add up and we think there is no way we can cope with so much.

-“We are only humans!” we repeat in our minds.

That is the key phrase. We are humans and because of this we know we need different kind of “food” that our body craves for, eats and digests to live a full and happy life. As George Gurdjieff (1877-1947) very well describes there are three kind of food. The first and very important are the impressions we receive through all our senses, then comes our breath and of course the actual food we eat.

So we will propose you an easy exercise that we all can do wherever we are.

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EXERCISE: EJERCICIO:

WALK AT THE SAME PACE LOOKING AT THE TREES / CAMINEN CON EL MISMO PASO MIRANDO LOS ARBOLES


TRY TO GRASP HOW THE TREES BREATH, MOVE. WATCH THE BIRDS FLYING, NESTING.

IN DOING SO LET GO ALL THE ORDINARY THOUGHTS THAT FILL YOUR MIND.

KEEP ON WALKING AT THE SAME PACE FOR 20 MINUTES.

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TRATEN DE ATARPAR LA FORMA EN QUE LOS ARBOLES RESPIRAN, SE MUEVEN. MIREN COMO VUELAN LOS PAJAROS, COMO HACEN SUS NIDOS.

AL HACER ESO DEJEN IR LOS PENSAMIENTOS ORDINARIOS QUE  LLENAN SUS MENTES.

SIGAN CAMINANDO CON EL MISMO PASO POR 20 MINUTOS.

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Hay diferntes tipo de ” comidas”

Todos necesitamos sacarnos de nustro sistema la muy indigesta angustia, sub-producto de propcupaciones sobre dinero, deudas, mantener el trabajo, encontrar uno Nuevo, nuestros hijos, el colegio, nuestras parejas y sus trabajos, padres….etc, etc. Todas estas cosas se suman y pensamos que no vamos a poder con tanto.

-“Somos sólo humanos!” nos repetimos en nuestras mentes.

Esa es la frase clave. Nosotros humanos y por eso sabemos que hay distintos tipos de comida que nuestro cuerpo desea, come y digiere para vivir una vida feliz. Como George Gurdjieff(1877-1947) describe hay tres tipo de comida. La primera y más importante son las impresiones que recibimos a traves de nuestros sentidos, después viene la respiración y por supuesto literalmente la comida que comemos.

Por eso les proponemos un ejercicio fácil que podemos realizar donde sea que estemos.

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January 6th, 2009

continued from yesterday…

The Energy of Life

 

Clean Book

Clean

When a person dies, something leaves the body. What is left is not really considered important. We burn it or burry it. That energy that left was animating the body. And giving it value. That is the energy of life.

Scientifically speaking, the body that remains is also made of pure energy. Ancient eastern spiritual teachers talked about this. Quantum physics arrived at the same conclusion relatively recently. The cells in our body are made of molecules, which in turn are made of atoms. We used to think that the atom was the smallest indivisible block of matter, but then we found it had a nucleus and electrons orbiting around it like the planets around the sun.  The distance between the nucleus and the electrons relative to their size is greater than the distance between the earth and the sun. The atoms are actually mostly space. Later physicists discovered that the nucleus itself was made of smaller particles, and these in turn were divided, until at one point, they found that the smallest component is no component at all, it’s just light. Everything is actually made of the same exact light. The reason why the same light can manifest as so many different things is that those bundles of light that we call atoms are vibrating at different frequencies. Like music, which is ultimately made of vibration, the different tones are different frequencies of that one quality, vibration.

We also know that not all vibrations are visible. Radiofrequencies, x-rays, ultraviolet and infrared energies are not “material”; they are not visible or weighable. But we know how powerful they are. They can be a force in both preserving and terminating life.

Life energy is not visible or weighable either, but it’s power and effect are obvious. It  holds all the molecules of the body together (when this energy leaves the body, it will literally disintegrate). It does so  with an amazing intelligence, organizing trillions of chemical reactions at any given nano-second. It allows thinking, feeling and all the other qualities that are missing on the flesh that is  left behind.

Every living organism shares this same phenomenon. When the energy of life leaves it, it’s molecules, lacking the force that holds them together with such intelligence, fall apart and “return to dust”.

There is a type of photography that provides clear evidence of a great difference between living and dead organisms. I am talking about Kirlian photography.  Look and judge for yourself.

Below is a Kirlian photograph of Broccoli. To the left is the image obtained as soon as it was taken from the earth it was growing in. To the right is an image of the same piece after it was cooked, a process that kills it. If instead of cooking it you leave it in the fridge for a few days, you would see the same loss of whatever those rays are (life energy ?  aura ?) I wonder if  what Kirlian photography is actually showing is the spark of enzymes. 

Kirlian picture of brocoli

Kirlian picture of broccoli

An important distinction between raw and cooked foods is sometimes the enzyme content. Enzymes are the molecules that initiate and facilitate the most important chemical reactions in living organisms. They are known as the “spark” of life.  Our digestion of foods is completely dependant on enzymes. Our body manufactures digestive enzymes along our digestive tract. The manufacturing of these biomolecules is energetically expensive, in other words, in order to make them, our cells have to work hard and spend energy. Food contains enzymes when it is raw. Heat above 118 Fahrenheit destroys its useful properties. Raw foodists argue that this is the main reason that make cooked foods harder to digest and unhealthy. I heard from David Wolfe, a famous Raw Food crusader, that eating 51 % of your foods raw would neutralize the damage of cooked foods. Raw foodists are happy if it’s raw. Live foodists go a step further. Raw food can still be lifeless. Most Raw food eaters also look for freshness, but don’t get as picky with this distinction.

Western scientists, doctors included, are masters at exploring, researching and understanding everything that can be weighed, touched, smelled, looked at under a microscope and counted. But we are only now opening our minds to even acknowledging energies that we cannot measure or control. It is also true that these energies are the most important to us, as evidenced by how differently we feel about a human body that is lacking the energy of life.

The same schools of thought that eloquently and confidently talked about the energetic nature of matter, thousands of years before electronic microscopes or particle accelerators were even thought of, also explained how the intangible energies can also be thought of as food. They taught that humans depend on the availability of these energies for vibrant health. As much as they depend on the essential nutrients that we are familiar with (protein, vitamin, minerals, etc).

Spiritual leader Georges Gurdjieff talked about 3 foods. He explained that our senses are actually “eating” the impressions they receive. What we see, hear, smell, and touch is actually a kind of food that must be provided and digested properly. This concept is supported by cases of humans or other animals that are greatly deprived from sensory stimulus. Animals or humans show failure to thrive under prolonged sensory deprivation. Plant lovers know how plants respond to music. The second kind of food according to Gurdjieff is obtained through breathing. Its digestion begins in the lungs and is completed at the cellular level in our body. We all know what happens after only a few minutes without this kind of “food”. The third kind of food is the only one that we talk about as being food.

If you are the type of person that needs “scientific” proof of concepts before you believe and put them into practice, you may have to wait a long time until our modern scientists develop an understanding of the importance of Life Energy as food for human health.

In the meantime, think about the following:

In the early 1900’s, Dr. Francis Pottenger conducted an experiment in California. He kept two groups of cats separated,  living in exact  environmental conditions, except one difference. One group was fed with raw meat and milk. The second group was fed the exact  quality and amount of meat and milk, only cooked. After some time, the cats  on raw food were healthy and thriving. The cats on cooked foods developed all kind of diseases. Cancer, arthritis, diabetes and other degenerative diseases, all human diseases.

Most people today buy foods in our modern supermarkets. When you take a bird’s eye view of one of them you see that 90 % of the products being sold there come in some kind of container. A box, a bag, a jar, a can, a tube. All these products are not really food. They are food-like products. There is no life in them. Most of them actually are full of chemicals to prevent any life from growing in them. Preservatives, conservatives and other chemicals are mixed with these food-like nonfoods so that bacteria don’t grow in them and kill the bacteria that were in there at the time of packaging. These fake foods are devoid of Life Energy but also of most essential minerals, vitamins, phytonutrients and essential fats. Instead, they are loaded with corrosive fats and the chemicals that give them smell, color, texture and consistency. Once in your intestines, the poisons that killed bacteria in the packages will kill the bacteria in your guts. These bacteria, the Intestinal Flora, are critical for Human health.

The other 10% of edibles in the supermarkets, generally located in the periphery, against the walls, has a somewhat higher chance of providing you with Life Energy. Depending on which supermarket you shop at, it can be more or less. Still, the reality is that there is much room for improvement.

The produce may look colorful and healthy, but this is many times just make up. By large, most of it traveled hundreds if not thousands of miles from its place of birth. The average time from harvest to your plate is between 5 and 10 days. By this time the energy of life is almost all gone. Even if you happen to buy a much fresher vegetable or fruit, if it was conventionally grown, it came from soils that are depleted of minerals. Because farmers know they are overusing the land, they help it with fertilizers. These mostly consist of NPK (nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium). Plants need about 52 minerals for their health. The rest of the minerals (zinc, magnesium, manganese, iron, calcium, etc) are missing. Plants grow weaker. Their immune systems get weak, making them the target of diseases. Bugs attack the weak plants and farmers attack the bugs with pesticides, insecticides, fungicides, herbicides and others. Ultimately the attack ends in your belly . Irradiation, waxing and other cosmetic retouches add another layer of chemicals. To top our unnatural practices regarding foods, we are now genetically modifying it, and we have no idea how this ends up affecting us.  Lifeless, loaded with chemicals and depleted of nutrients. Your salad may not be as healthy as you thought.

The fish, often another favorite of supermarket shoppers on a health kick, may just be the bait for fishing diseases. 90% of fish sold in regular supermarkets were raised in fish farms, under such unnatural conditions that instead of producing their staple beneficial nutrients (fish oils), these fish produce other chemicals that should never find their way to your stomach.

Cows today are raised in feedlots, never walk, are fattened with hormones, and are fed with corn instead of grass. Corn, unnatural already to the cow’s digestive system, also has pesticides. It causes them to get inflamed and infected and thus get antibiotics. Only people with good medical insurance should be allowed to purchase in the meat section.

Poultry these days is also raised in overcrowded cages, never see the light of day and are given chemicals that can make your husband grow bigger breasts than yourself and your 7 year daughter start her period.

I am not telling you all of this to scare you, but if it didn’t scare you, there is something wrong. Unless you just don’t believe a word, in which case all you have to do is Google any single one of all the facts mentioned. It may save your life.

My personal experience with Live Foods so far leaves me without any doubt whatsoever of their benefit. I experimented eating only live foods for periods of time and had great results. Usually I get leaner, my skin glows, my eyes get clear and white, I feel lighter, energetic, clear minded and my mood is stable. My bowel movements are frequent and easier, almost odorless. My skin gets smooth and tight. I sleep better. I remember my dreams. My breath is fresh even in the morning before brushing my teeth.

Whenever I start eating only live foods I find myself thinking that I want to do it forever. But consistently, after the second week I start craving cooked foods. And the cravings get stronger by the day until one day I notice a subtle level of anxiety, or my digestion is off. I never went past 3 weeks of consistent and exclusive live foods. 

Keeping a live food lifestyle is not that easy from a practical point of view. It can be more expensive to eat this way as well. Finding fresh enough produce that still holds the energy of life is tricky. It has to be for the most part grown locally and therefore seasonal. There is research involved to find the reliable sources. Sprouting is an important aspect of it and if you can’t find variation of them you have to do it yourself. Nuts and seeds have to be soaked, it is not enough to get them raw. Soaking them activates the dormant life force as they start attempting to give birth to the plant that is waiting inside every seed.

I’ve guided many of my patients to experiment with life foods and had great success , when they were able to follow. Consistently their comments were similar to mine.

In a few cases the live food plan did not work. These patients could not tolerate  it. Gases, bloating, abdominal discomfort were the culprits.

In Dr Gabriel Cousen’s book, “Conscious eating”, he explains that becoming a vegetarian is not as simple as having two salads a day. The B Vitamins and a few other important nutrients are harder to obtain from a purely vegetarian diet. It takes research and a period of adaptation to become one permanently in a healthy way. His book gave an explanation to an observation that repeatedly puzzled me before. Many vegetarians I met through the years had to quit sooner or later, and many that persist are not that healthy. His book talks about vegetarians, not live foodists. There is a difference, but my guess is that many of his explanations for one apply to the other.

Live Foodists are usually intelligent, informed and aware. They believe Live Food is the way nature intended humans to eat. They have really good arguments, which not only address the impact on human health but on the environment as well. It even sounds possible that a global shift to live foods could solve global warming and world hunger. I am still interested and learning.

You don’t need to wait until the final word is out. You can start experimenting gradually. Even if you just increase the percentage of the total food you consume in favor of live foods, you will experience  benefits.

Going 100% live for a period of time is a great way to cleanse and detoxify, something we should all be doing periodically to counteract the inevitable toxic overload that comes with living in any modern city on this planet today. There are many ways to cleanse and detox, from the most intense form, water fasting, to less intense, like following a live food plan for a period of time.

Earlier I pointed out how human diseases were practically nonexistent among the other animals on the planet when living in the wild. In my opinion, there are many reasons for that which in turn are interconnected. These are just a few of them:

1)   Thinking is the ability that makes humans different from every other species. We are proud of it and for the most part think of ourselves as the superior species. We certainly act as if we own the planet and treat every other species as if it was given existence for our enjoyment or use. But that blessing became curse. Thinking, a powerful tool has taken over. It has become an automatic, habitual and toxic process that causes stress with all its consequences. Incessant, repetitive and mostly negative is the basic dysfunction of humanity. It makes so much inner noise that prevents us from listening to our instincts. The loss of instinct has been devastating if for no other reason the fact that we now have to think about what to eat. All other animals do this instinctively

2)   We have departed from the ways of nature and created living environments that are full of chemicals that are toxic

3)   We grow our food in an unnatural way as well with yet more toxic chemicals

4)   We cook our foods

5)   We eat food-like products

Whatever we are doing is not working. We are not at ease, and we are threatening the planet. Global warming experts are finally making themselves heard. As a doctor, I always look for the diagnosis on my patients. If the planet earth is looked at as a patient, a living creature, we immediately notice, Patient Planet Earth has a fever.

 

Where is it coming from ? What is causing it ?

 

We can examine the patient, look at its arteries (the rivers), it’s lungs (the forests), It’s ribs (mountains chains) or it’s tissues and cells (humans, animals, birds, plants….). There again something jumps out and catches our attention. There is one type of cell that is behaving erratically. These cells are killing all other cells and each other. They reproduce fast, without respecting the laws of population self regulation according to the surroundings. They produce and release toxic chemicals that irritate, inflame and damage themselves and everything else. Does it sound familiar ? I could well be talking about cancer.

Are we the planet’s cancer ? Will we end up causing the death of the organism that houses us, of which we are actually a cell of ?

If this is the case, what is the treatment ?

Maybe a planetary doctor will prescribe chemotherapy or surgery to get rid of the sick cells.

Or we can start treating ourselves holistically.

 

Nutrition is one of the main pillars of any sound plan.

 

I fully agree with Michael Pollan on what should the prescription say. He wrote it on the cover of his latest book, “In Defense of Food”;

 

EAT FOOD, NOT TOO MUCH, MOSTLY PLANTS


HAVE A HAPPY AND HEALTHY 2009

ALEJANDRO JUNGER

 

Alejandro Junger

Alejandro Junger at his office

 

January 5th, 2009

 

Alejandro Junger

Alejandro Junger, An Alchemical Man

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“Alejandro doesn’t just live his life as a doctor, he honors life with his commitment to human health.” Alchemical Woman

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What should I eat? What is the perfect diet for a human being?

This is the most frequent question people ask me.

 

My name is Alejandro Junger. I am 44 years old and live in New York, where I work as a doctor. When patients see me at my office or in social gatherings, as soon as people know I am a physician, the question of what to eat pops up automatically. People tend to think that I have the authority to answer this question correctly. I giggle inside. If they only new that in all my years of medical school and later during internship, residency and fellowship in Internal Medicine and Cardiology, I never even heard of there being a class about nutrition!

My answer today is the result of many years of reading, researching and experimenting with different dietary plans and philosophies. I didn’t do all this work so I could learn how to treat my patients. I did it because I was desperately looking for solutions to my own health problems.

We are the only animals on this planet that don’t seem to know what to eat, and just in case, we end up eating everything that can possibly be digested, and many things that can’t. But never in recorded history has the need to answer this question been as critically important as today. The state of health of humans is alarming, globally. Even though we seem to be the ruling species on earth, thanks to our superior intelligence and advanced technology, we are the only creatures that get sick regularly. There are no diabetic elephants in the wild. I never heard of a monkey with anorexia, tigers with cancer, gazelles with depression or kangaroos with restless leg syndrome. Animals in the wild are born, roam around, eat, reproduce and die of old age, an accident or are eaten by another animal (mostly us).

What went wrong with us? How come so many humans are sick with the strangest diseases, the list of which keeps getting longer?

There is something so obvious, yet greatly ignored, that might hold the key to this crisis. A truth which is self evident and accepted now by all cultures:

WE ARE WHAT WE EAT.

This statement is so simple that we overlook its implications. But it is literally the case. Every tissue, every cell, every molecule in your body came from food. The bricks with which you built the building that you call your body, in which you live from birth until death, are 100 % obtained from what you eat.

Do you want to live in a quality building?

Food also determines the quality of your blood, your arteries, your brain, your liver and every single one of the trillions of chemical reactions that happen every single instant, the sum total of which makes your life experience possible.

Still, despite our advances in knowledge and technology, going to the moon, breaking the genetic code, splitting the atom and being able to chat online with a friend on the other side of the planet, when it comes to choosing what to eat, as important as it is, we are way less smart than a worm.

Considering that food is so intimately related to health and disease, it would seem important that doctors master the subject. But as it is, traditional physicians are the less interested people I ever met when it comes to nutrition. You need proof? Go and see what they eat at the hospital cafeteria, or even worse, check out what they feed patients in their temples of healing, the hospitals. This is one of the strangest contradictions of human behavior. Doctors study how to heal other people with passion for years, then take the Hippocratic oath to “First, never harm”, and then, when patients are at the sickest moments, needing to leave their home and check themselves in, surrendering and trusting, doctors poison them with hospital food.

There are many other people trying to figure out what human beings should eat.  And this is where things get really confusing. There are thousands of theories and opinions about it. The bookstores are packed with whole sections on food. There is so much information that it ends up being confusing. You almost wish you never started asking yourself questions when you are first exploring this world.

Part of the confusion is due to the fact that theories are based on completely different angles and for different intentions. A great percentage of the books out there talk about how best to eat to look good, which in America means to loose weight and be skinny. Others are based on philosophical beliefs. Humanitarian, religious, spiritual, environmental, political, historical and economical concerns are the basis for many conclusions of what human diet should look like. Yet others just tell you how to build huge muscles, how to protect other animal species by your choices in food, what to eat according to your blood type or the season of the year you are living in.

And then there is the government with its responsibility to care for the people. Much of what happens in the country at a large scale is a result of what the government decides to regulate and what information they provide to the people. As the government gets wiser it goes changing what it teaches the American people. If you want to get an idea of the evolution of the government’s beliefs as it relates to nutrition look at the food pyramid and how its been changing over the years. This is exactly what the government recommends we eat.

The media also has a huge impact on the dietary trends that are adopted in this country. And who knows where they get their information from.

When you mix all these sources of information and trends and throw them in a country, you can get an idea of what is being done by looking at the population in general. In America it’s easy to get an idea of the evolution of popular dominating beliefs and practices. When there is a new theory that seems to work it spreads like wildfire. The person that comes up with it becomes famous, his or her book a bestseller, his products make him a millionaire and everybody is buying. The classic Fad. America goes from one to another.

The first big fad in America was the LOW FAT movement. Everything became Low Fat or NO FAT. Americans became obsessed with removing fat from their diets and substituted it with carbohydrates. Doctors, nutritionists, governments, celebrities and the media supported it. Everyone agreed that if you want to be healthy, fit and pretty you must avoid fat at all cost. Fat became the mortal enemy.

The result of this massive experiment was catastrophic. America became the Fattest Country in the world and one of the unhealthiest ones. We are still suffering its consequences.

America soon found the solution for the problem. Change the enemy. And we picked carbs. As if the NO FAT madness never happened and without learning to be a little more cautious, Carbs became the mortal enemy, supported by most respected sources of information and exploited by the food industry.

And then a genius came along and invented the HIGH PROTEIN-LOW CARB diet, which allowed you to eat as much fat as you wanted. The Atkins diet was so effective in delivering its promise of weight loss that it became a worldwide sensation. Despite the fact that it is now known to be a very unhealthy diet, increases heart disease and cancer rates among other things, people still follow it worldwide. The obsession with being skinny supersedes any concerns for well being for millions of people.

Next came the Zone, the South Beach Diet, Body for Life, Fit for Life, The Rainbow Diet, Macrobiotic, Vegetarian, Vegan, Raw Food, Life Food…you get the picture.

I tried most diets for some time when I was looking to overcome symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome, allergies and depression. I found a lot of very interesting information and experienced my body changing shape and my symptoms disappearing. I became a living example of the profound effects of foods in treating diseases that medicine only prescribes medications for.

After all of this I came to a profound realization. The only book that can be trusted for this kind of advice is The Book of Nature.

At a glance you can see the general rules of the way nature intended things to be. All other animals on earth eat plants, fruits, vegetables, seeds, nuts, grains and each other. Animals that eat other animals only eat a few kinds. They eat them raw and never have 3 meals a day. No animal cooks any food whatsoever. No mammal other than humans drinks milk after they stop breastfeeding. We are the only ones. And we don’t drink our mother’s milk when we grow up; we steal it from a different kind of mammal. And we turn it into a thousand different things.

Humans are complex animals, so I am not sure that we should just copy one species as to what they eat. If we did, and we chose the animal that is most similar to us we would end up eating mostly bananas and other leaves.

What I did learn is that when we get sick, following the basic rules I mentioned above is helpful. I have seen my own and many other people’s dis-eases just melt as if by magic.

Today I still don’t know with certainty what humans SHOULD eat, but I know for sure what a few ways of eating can do to our body and mind.

Which brings us to the subject of LIVE FOODS.

to be continued tomorrow…

December 25th, 2008

Beauty and health start with what we eat.  We will share with you different recipes from our kitchens and invite people to share their knowledge too. Recipes well received!