Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Nine Health Books That Will Change Your Life Forever

One of the most important things I have learned from my father was the understanding that knowledge is the key to power.

Knowledge is power and power can be used and abused in many ways and yet, the most valuable is the knowledge that empowers us to take control over our own lives and not the lives of others.

What could be more exciting than the knowledge that allows us to determine how young and how healthy we are at any age. That's right! At any age. 

People in the West are not only aging faster, but also living longer than ever. Our beauty ideals, however, did not change since the 1980s. Those who can afford it resolve to drastic measures such as plastic surgery. But plastic surgery is superficial and results are not always flattering. And they do not last. Most importantly, plastic surgery does not address the aging process that is taking place on cellular level.

The only lasting and effective change is the change from inside out. Our bodies have the most remarkable ability to heal themselves and sometimes even small changes in lifestyle can reverse conditions that seem to be hopeless. We just have to stop doing what harms us.

Healthy nutrition, supplementation, exercise, proper relaxation and a positive outlook on life, are the crucial elements that act in synergy to sustain our mental and physical health. 

To a great degree we can determine how fast we are aging and how healthy we are, but many people do not have the necessary knowledge. Fortunately, many passionate physicians and researchers in the field of aging and gerontology popularize the latest research making it accessible to all those who wish to stay vital till the old age.

A visit to a bookstore may leave us confused. How are we to determine which of the hundreds of anti-aging books is really right for us. Where do we start? 

To make it easier to the readers of this blog I have selected nine books that address aging in a very effective and comprehensive way. Together they map out a program that will allow anyone to take control of their weight issues, hormonal imbalance, inflammation, chronic disease and degenerative processes that contribute to premature aging.

The books to start with:
This short list of highly readable books is a good start to the theory and practice of anti-aging and longevity. Keep in mind that many chronic conditions can be reversed and it is never too late or too early to embrace an anti-aging strategy. Smart fitness programs, nutritional supplements and state of the art skin care can help us feel and look younger longer. And with positive attitude we can really enjoy our journey through life.

By Dominique Allmon


*Information in this article is for educational purposes only and is not meant to diagnose or cure a disease.

Creative Commons License
Nine Health Books That Will Change Your Life Forever by Dominique Allmon is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Into the Moment

A boat passing through the mountains by Ted Lee

The autumn hill gathers the remaining light,
A flying bird chases after its companion.
The green color is bright
And brings me into the moment,
like a sunset mist that has no fixed place.
Wang Wei

Image: A boat passing through the mountains by Ted Lee
Image source here

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

On the Edge

I want to stand as close 
to the edge as I can 
without going over. 
Out on the edge 
you see 
all the kinds of things 
you can't see 
from the center. 

Kurt Vonnegut

Image source unknown but greatly appreciated

Sunday, September 15, 2013

America, the Exceptional

America, the exceptional

Vladimir Putin's open letter to America shocked or even upset some of my friends. It not only received quite a coverage in the media, but also managed to bring out some serious reflection on the state of things in the country, at least among the conservatives. 

Many things may not be the way they should, but America is exceptional and Americans should always keep this in their minds even if their own president does not share this belief.

While my friends are still recovering from the shock, the Republican Senator Rand Paul responded publicly to Putin's letter. His response, however, received much less media coverage and I wish to share it here for all my readers on this September Sunday morning. 

President Putin, America is Exceptional 
by Senator Rand Paul

A recent op-ed by Russian President Vladimir Putin has prompted me to respond. While his position that the Syrian conflict can and should be settled through a political and diplomatic solution is correct, virtually everything else in his writing should be taken to task. So I shall.

I begin with Mr. Putin’s disagreement regarding the exceptionalism of the United States of America. I could not more strongly disagree with him. While he is correct that God created every human being as an equal in His eyes, clearly the results of each of our efforts on this earth, individually and collectively, are not equal.

America’s exceptionalism is rooted in our founding documents and values. From the rights granted by our creator, but guaranteed by our Constitution. We should not shy away from saying so, especially when our actions are in keeping with this exceptional founding, as they were this week in our debate over going to war in Syria. Our constitutional checks and balances were on full display, largely resulting in the at least temporary halting of a rush to war. 

Mr. Putin’s second mistake is to focus on the speck in the eye of the United States, while ignoring the plank in his own. He accuses the United States of alarming interventions in foreign countries. While I certainly have my bone to pick with our foreign policy over the last 15 years, the Russian President is the least qualified person I can think of to make this argument with a straight face. 

We went to war in Afghanistan because they were harboring those who attacked us on 9/11. Mr. Putin’s cohorts went to war there three decades earlier for no legitimate reason.  

The United States until now has resisted arming one side of the Syrian civil war – all the while the other side has been armed by Russia. 

The United States has used diplomatic pressure to attempt to resolve the ongoing situation with Iran – Russia has just announced a large arms sale that will escalate tensions in the region. Being lectured to on foreign intervention by Mr. Putin would be comical if it weren’t such a serious example of a lack of self-awareness. 

Nevertheless here we are. Sometimes the enemy of my enemy is my friend, or at least my temporary ally. As Mr. Putin correctly pointed out, the United States and Russia banded together to defeat the menace of the Nazis a generation ago. And both countries certainly face real and present threats from Islamic extremists, both at home and in areas of strategic importance.

American should not act militarily in Syria because it cannot and should not join the same side as Al Qaeda. Russia cannot and should not continue to support militarily the brutal Assad regime. 

And so, the dialogue that began this week must go forward, and it must be given a chance to succeed. 

The issue of course, is with the participants and the details of the plan. Asking us to “trust them” is clearly not a palatable option, and we cannot act naively simply to bypass war. Any diplomatic solution must involve a clear plan to rid Syria of these weapons, with strong verification and enforcement mechanisms. As Reagan used to put it, Trust but Verify. 

So while I welcome the engagement of the Russians, and the dialogue Mr. Putin this week attempted to begin with our country, I remain to be convinced of the details. 

And I respond to him directly with the statement that yes, American is indeed exceptional. Our history has proved it so. While we all share the same Creator, we do not all share the same richness of history regarding human rights, freedom and democracy. There has been in the past 200 years a city on the hill that has shone brighter than all others. We will not be ashamed of that. May God allow us to continue to model this example to the world in these difficult times.

Important reading

Article source TIME

Image source here

If you have not yet read Vladimir Putin's letter here is the link

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Plum Chutney Recipe

The summer is not over yet and we can still enjoy a really nice weather on most days, although the crispy air seems to carry a wave of new scents that unmistakably indicate the beginning of a new season. 

The time between high summer and autumn is full of sensory surprises. Scents and colors animate us to be creative, so let's make something exotic. Since plums are abundant now, let's make a sweet plum chutney.

A nicely spiced plum chutney does not only preserve the summer goodness, it also brings a dose of excitement to a distinguished gourmet who is willing to take some risks in the kitchen.

Chutney is a popular condiment used in South Indian cuisine. It is usually made of variety  fruits or vegetable with a mixture of Indian spices. 

  • 1 lb ripe plums
  • 1/2 lb red onions, chopped
  • 2-3 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 hot chili pepper, sliced into thin slices
  • 2 inch long fresh ginger root sliced into thin slices
  • 1 Tbsp black mustard seeds
  • 1/2 Tbsp grind coriander
  • 1/2 Tbsp grind cumin
  • 1 Tbsp allspice (pimento seeds)
  • 1 Tbsp pink Himalaya salt
  • 1 cup water (add more if necessary)
  • 2 cups apple cider vinegar
  • 1 cup raw sugar

  • Wash the plums and cut into quarters. Remove the stalks and stones. 
  • Put plums, onions, raisins, garlic, ginger and chili in a large pot. Add water, allspice, cumin, coriander, and salt. Mix well and bring it to boil.
  • Reduce the heat. Cover the pot and stew on a small heat for about 30 minutes. Stir with a wooden spoon every few minutes.
  • Add apple cider vinegar and raw sugar. Stir again and stew for another 30 minutes or so until the liquid is gone.
  • When your chutney is ready transfer it into perfectly clean glass jar. Let it cool off and close tightly with a lid.
  • Store in a dark, cool place. Refrigerate after opening.

Like any chutney this one can be enjoyed with variety of spicy curries, roasted meats, and well aged cheeses.

By Dominique Allmon 

Dominique Allmon©2013


Thursday, September 12, 2013

Quote of the Day

Geometrical Psychology - Image of Human Consciousness by Benjamin Betts, 1887
Geometrical Psychology - Image of Human Consciousness
by Benjamin Betts, 1887

So the universe is not quite as you thought it was. You'd better rearrange your beliefs, then. Because you certainly can't rearrange the universe. - Isaac Asimov & Robert Silverberg in "Nightfall"

Nightfall is a science fiction short story that was written by Isaac Asimov in 1941. It is a story about an impending disaster on a planet that is normally illuminated by a perpetual sunlight of its six suns. The denizens of this planet are about to experience the terrifying phenomenon of total darkness. In 1990 Asimov's short story was adapted by Robert Silverberg and transformed into a very readable novel.

Image source here

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Healthy Life on a Budget?

There is hardly a week without some shocking discovery. Food scandals and food safety hazards; cancer causing chemicals in food or personal hygiene products; drugs that kill; new reports telling us not to eat a particular thing and a while later another report urging us to embrace the very thing for our own sake. This is confusing to most consumers and many turn to alternative sources and organic produce. Those who can, grow their own food, but many are completely at a loss. 

Last month I had a chat with my Facebook friends. Confusion is one thing, wish for clarity and safety another, but many people simply cannot afford "safe" food. The question is why harmful chemicals end up in food in the first place? And why on earth do we have to be affluent to be able to get what a decent human being deserves? Is clean and safe food only for those who can afford it?

I often look back in time when parents did not have to worry that much. Food was simply honest and safe. Food scandals did not exist. Some foods may have been bad for you because they had too much sugar or too much fat, but people, in general, ate well and did not worry about harmful ingredients. There were less food allergies and not many people were obese back then.

But something happened in the last few decades. People started consuming less food and replaced it with "food products" that were made in factories out of ingredients that had nothing to do with food. 

Many housewives embraced quick and easy ready meals and few people questioned the necessity of food preservation. Who would object to food that does not spoil? But did anyone really ask what ingredients extended the shelf life of a product to ten or twenty years. Could such thing be safe for humans? 
One does not have to be a conspiracy theory nut to deduce that the legislators are in cahoots with the food and drugs making industry. These people move through the revolving door - they either manage big food and pharmaceutical companies and get appointed to run federal agencies or move to politics later, or the other way around. At the same time consumers are getting sick from the junk they eat and the pharmaceutical industry is making exorbitant profits in attempt to cure them. 

This really is horrible. But are we all helpless victims of some obscure machinations? If we collectively refused to buy the crap that is being sold to us maybe something would change. Yet for as long as only the affluent people can afford safe, organic produce on daily basis, many of us have to maneuver between the aisles and buy only what still resembles real food. 

To everyone struggling to stay healthy on a budget I can only suggest a seious reconsideration of the choices they make. Investment in real, organically and humanely produced food will pay off. It will not only minimize health care bills in the future, but most importantly, extend the lifespan and improve quality of life in old age.

Remember that every time you reach for a product on a supermarket shelf you are balancing your life against someone's profits. Does this work out for you? Are you on the right side of the equation? 

Dominique Allmon

Dominique Allmon©2013


Sunday, September 1, 2013

Quote od the Day

Democracy is an experiment, 
and the right of the majority to rule 
is no more inherent 
than the right of the minority to rule; 
and unless the majority represents 
sane, righteous, unselfish public, 
it has no inherent right. 

William Allen White

Image source here