WARNING: the foods we cook for Abby are safe for her, but not necessarily for everyone. Please confirm any ingredients are safe for you before using in your diet. Food Allergies can kill and the best policy is complete avoidance. Read this post for more info.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

New Vocab.....

As Abby's journey leads me down various paths I have been doing a lot of learning! Let's see what I can remember and share.

Kefir- Kefir is a cultured, enzyme-rich food filled with friendly micro-organisms that help balance your “inner ecosystem.” More nutritious and therapeutic than yogurt, it supplies complete protein, essential minerals, and valuable B vitamins.

Kefir is simple and inexpensive to make at home.
Kefir is used to restore the inner eco-system after antibiotic therapy.
Kefir can be made into a delicious smoothie that kids love.
Kefir is excellent nourishment for pregnant and nursing women, the elderly, and those with compromised immunity.
What if I’m lactose intolerant, and don’t do dairy? Or don’t digest milk products well? Is kefir right for me?
The beneficial yeast and friendly bacteria in the kefir culture consume most of the lactose (or milk sugar). Eat kefir on an empty stomach first thing in the morning before (or for) breakfast and you’ll be delighted to find it can be easily digested — as numerous people who have been lactose intolerant for years have discovered.

Quorn- Quorn™ is the brand name of a premium line of all-natural, meat-free frozen foods. The Quorn brand has been sold in the UK since 1985, and is now the #1 retail brand of meat-free foods in the world! Since its US launch in 2002, Quorn products have become the best-selling frozen meat-free brand in natural food stores*! Quorn products deliver great taste, fantastic quality and a wide variety of items to meet the demands of on-the-go lifestyles. You can always depend on Quorn products to be meat-free and soy-free.
There are believed to be over 600,000 varieties of fungi in the world, some of which are the most sought-after foods, such as mushrooms and truffles. The principal ingredient in all Quorn products is mycoprotein (“myco” is Greek for “fungi”). The mycoprotein comes from Fusarium venenatum, which was originally discovered growing in a field in Buckinghamshire, England. In the late 1960s, initial product development began, and mycoprotein’s potential as an efficient and nutritious protein source was soon recognized.


While much of the mannose used in glycosylation is believed to be derived from glucose, in cultured hepatoma (liver-derived) cells, most of the mannose for glycoprotein biosynthesis comes from extracellular mannose, not glucose. [2] Many of the glycoproteins produced in the liver are secreted into the bloodstream, so dietary mannose is distributed throughout the body. [3]
Mannose is present in numerous glycoconjugates including N-linked glycosylation of proteins. C-mannosylation is also abundant and can be found in collagen-like regions.

Recombinant proteins produced in yeast may be subject to mannose addition in patterns different from those used by mammalian cells.[4] This difference in recombinant proteins from those normally produced in mammalian organisms may influence the effectiveness of vaccines.

Mannose can be formed by the oxidation of mannitol.
It can also be formed from glucose in the Lobry-de Bruyn-van Ekenstein transformation.
[edit]Therapeutic uses

D-mannose is sold as a naturopathic remedy for urinary tract infections, and it is claimed to work through the disruption of adherence of bacteria in the urinary tract.

The root of both "mannose" and "mannitol" is manna, which the Bible records as the food supplied to the Israelites during their journey through the Sinai Peninsula. Manna is a sweet secretion of several trees and shrubs, such as Fraxinus ornus.

Mannose differs from glucose by inversion of the C-2 chiral center. Mannose displays a pucker in the solution ring form.
This apparently simple change leads to the drastically different chemistry of the two hexoses, as it does the remaining six aldohexoses.


Quercetin belongs to a group of plant pigments called flavonoids that give many fruits, flowers, and vegetables their color.

Flavonoids, such as quercetin, are antioxidants -- they scavenge damaging particles in the body known as free radicals, which damage cell membranes, tamper with DNA, and even cause cell death. Antioxidants can neutralize free radicals and may reduce or even help prevent some of the damage they cause. They also help keep LDL ("bad") cholesterol from being damaged, which scientists think may contribute to heart disease. In test tubes, quercetin has strong antioxidant properties, but researchers aren't sure whether taking quercetin (and many other antioxidants) has the same effects inside the body.

Quercetin acts like an antihistamine and an anti-inflammatory, and may help protect against heart disease and cancer. Quercetin can also help stabilize the cells that release histamine in the body and thereby have an anti-inflammatory effect.

Allergies, Asthma, Hay Fever and Hives

In test tubes, quercetin prevents immune cells from releasing histamines, chemicals that cause allergic reactions. On that basis, researchers think that quercetin may help reduce symptoms of allergies, including runny nose, watery eyes, hives, and swelling of the face and lips. However, there is no evidence yet that it works in humans.

Heart Disease

Test tube, animal, and some population based studies suggest that the flavonoids quercetin, resveratrol, and catechins (all found in high concentration in red wine) may help reduce the risk of atherosclerosis (plaque build up in arteries that can lead to heart attack or stroke). These nutrients appear to protect against the damage caused by LDL ("bad") cholesterol and may help prevent death from heart disease. However, most human studies have looked at flavonoids in the diet, not as supplements. Animal studies have used extremely large amounts of flavonoids (more than you could get through a supplement). More studies in people are needed to see if flavonoid supplements can be effective.

High Cholesterol

Test tubes studies show that quercetin prevents damage to LDL cholesterol, and population studies show that people who eat diets high in flavonoids have lower cholesterol. One study found that people who took quercetin and an alcohol free red wine extract (which contains quercetin) had less damage to LDL cholesterol. Another study found that quercetin reduced LDL concentrations in overweight subjects who were at high risk of heart disease. More studies are needed, however, to show whether taking a quercetin supplement will have the same effect.


Studies show that quercetin supplementation reduces blood pressure in people who have hypertension.

Interstitial Cystitis

Two small studies suggested that people with interstitial cystitis might benefit from flavonoids. People with this condition have bladder pain, similar to a bladder infection, and often experience an urgent need to urinate. In both studies, those who took a supplement containing quercetin appeared to have fewer symptoms. However, the studies included other flavonoids, so it isn't known which one might have the most beneficial effect. More and better designed studies are needed.


Some preliminary evidence indicates that quercetin might reduce symptoms of prostatitis (inflammation of the prostate). One small study found that men who took quercetin had a reduction in symptoms compared to men who took placebo. The study was small, however, and the results need to be confirmed.

Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA)

There are reports of people with RA who had fewer symptoms when they switched from a typical Western diet to a vegan diet with lots of uncooked berries, fruits, vegetables, nuts, roots, seeds, and sprouts containing antioxidants, including quercetin. But there is no evidence that the positive effects were due directly to antioxidants, and no evidence that quercetin supplements would help treat RA.


Scientists have long considered quercetin, and other flavonoids contained in fruits and vegetables important in cancer prevention. People who eat more fruits and vegetables tend to have lower risk of some types of cancer. And animal and test tube studies suggest that flavonoids do indeed have anti cancer properties. Quercetin and other flavonoids have been shown in these studies to inhibit the growth of cancer cells from breast, colon, prostate, ovarian, endometrial, and lung tumors. One study even suggests that quercetin is more effective than reservatrol in terms of inhibiting tumor growth. Another found that frequent intake of quercetin rich foods was associated with lower lung cancer risk. The association was even stronger among subjects who smoked more than 20 cigarettes daily. However, more research is needed.

Dietary Sources:

Fruits and vegetables -- particularly citrus fruits, apples, onions, parsley, sage, tea, and red wine -- are the primary dietary sources of quercetin. Olive oil, grapes, dark cherries, and dark berries -- such as blueberries, blackberries, and bilberries -- are also high in flavonoids, including quercetin.

Available Forms:

Quercetin supplements are available as pills or capsules. They are often packaged with bromelain (an enzyme found in pineapple) because both are anti-inflammatories. Other flavonoid rich extracts include those from grape seed, bilberry, Ginkgo biloba, and green tea.

There are also water soluble forms of quercetin available, such as hesperidn-methyl-chalcone (HMC) or quercetin-chalcone.


There isn't enough evidence to recommend quercetin for children.


Recommended adult dosages of quercetin vary depending on the condition being treated.


Quercetin is generally considered safe. Side effects may include headache and upset stomach. Preliminary evidence suggests that a byproduct of quercetin can lead to a loss of protein function. Very high doses of quercetin may damage the kidneys. You should take periodic breaks from taking quercetin.

Pregnant and breastfeeding women and people with kidney disease should avoid quercetin.

At high doses (greater than 1 g per day), there are some reports of damage to the kidneys.(so not an option for Abby)

---Magnesium is an essential mineral required by the body for maintaining normal muscle and nerve function, keeping a healthy immune system, maintaining heart rhythm, and building strong bones. Magnesium is also involved in at least 300 biochemical reactions in the body. A deficiency in magnesium can lead to muscle spasms, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, high blood pressure, anxiety disorders, migraines, osteoporosis, and cerebral infarction. Conversely, consuming too much magnesium typically causes diarrhea as the body attempts to excrete the excess. The current RDA for magnesium is 400mg. Below is a list of high magnesium foods.
#1: Bran (Rice, Wheat, and Oat)
Rice, Wheat, and Oat bran are great additions to breads and breakfast cereals like oats, rye, and buckwheat. One cup of crude rice bran contains 922mg of magnesium (230% RDA) which is 781mg (195% RDA) per 100 gram serving. Crude wheat bran contains 354mg of magnesium (89% RDA) per cup, or 611mg (153% RDA) per 100 gram serving. Crude oat bran contains 220mg of magnesium (55% RDA) per cup, or 235mg magnesium (59% RDA) per 100 gram serving. Click to see complete nutrition facts.
#2: Dried Herbs
Dried herbs are packed with vitamins and a healthy addition to almost any meal. Dried coriander provides the most magnesium with 694mg (174% RDA) per 100 gram serving, or 14mg (3% RDA) per tablespoon. It is followed by Chives (160% RDA), Spearmint (151% RDA), Dill (112% RDA), Sage (107% RDA), Basil (106% RDA), and Savory (95% RDA). Click to see complete nutrition facts.
#3: Squash, Pumpkin, and Watermelon Seeds
Great as a snack or in a salad, pumpkin, squash, and watermelon seeds are packed with magnesium.
Squash and pumpkin seeds provide 535 mg of magnesium (134% RDA) per 100 gram serving, or 738mg (185% RDA) per cup. Watermelon seeds provide 515mg (129% RDA) of magnesium per 100 gram serving, or 556mg (139% RDA) per cup. Click to see complete nutrition facts.
#4: Cocoa Powder (Dark Chocolate)
Dark chocolate is becoming more popular and with good reason, long regarded as junk food dark chocolate is packed with vitamins and conferred health benefits. Cocoa powder provides 499mg of magnesium (125% RDA) per 100 gram serving or 429mg (107% RDA) per cup. Dark baking chocolate provides 327mg per 100 gram serving (82% RDA), or 95mg (24% RDA) per square, and a typical chocolate candy bar provides 63mg of magnesium (16% RDA) per 100 gram serving or 28mg (7% RDA) per bar. Click to see complete nutrition facts.
#5: Flax, Sesame Seeds, and Sesame Butter (Tahini)
Flax and Sesame seeds are a great source of heart healthy oils and also provide a good source of magnesium. Flax seeds provide 392mg (92% RDA) per 100 gram serving or 39mg (10% RDA) per tablespoon. Sesame seeds provide 351mg (88% RDA) per 100 gram serving, or 32mg (8% RDA) per tablespoon. Sesame butter (tahini) provides 362mg of magnesium per 100 gram serving, or 58mg (14% RDA) per tablespoon.
Click to see complete nutrition facts.
#6: Brazil Nuts
Possibly the largest of all nuts, brazil nuts are a great source of magnesium. Brazil nuts provide 376mg (94% RDA) of magnesium per 100 gram serving, 500mg (125% RDA) per cup, and 19mg (5% RDA) in a single kernel or nut.
Click to see complete nutrition facts.
#7: Sunflower Seeds
Sunflower seeds are the number one source of vitamin E, and a good source of thiamin. Sunflower seeds provide 325mg (81% RDA) of magnesium per 100 gram serving, or 455mg (114% RDA) per cup.
Click to see complete nutrition facts.

#8: Almonds and Cashews (Mixed nuts, Pine Nuts)
Nuts are great as a snack or as an addition to salads and soups. Almonds provide 286mg (72% RDA) per 100 gram serving, or 395mg (99% RDA) per cup. Cashews provide 273mg (68% RDA) per 100 gram serving, or 352mg (88% RDA) per cup. Pine nuts provide 251mg (63% RDA) per 100 gram serving, or 339mg (85% RDA) per cup. Mixed nuts in general provide 251 mg (63% RDA) per 100 gram serving, or 361mg (90% RDA) per cup. Click to see complete nutrition facts.
#9: Molasses
A good substitute for refined sugar in cakes and breads, molasses is also a great source of magnesium. Molasses provides 242mg (61% RDA) per 100 gram serving, 816mg (204% RDA) per cup, and 48mg (12% RDA) per tablespoon.
Click to see complete nutrition facts.
#10: Dry Roasted Soybeans (Edamame)
Great as a snack or as an addition to salads, dry roasted soybeans are also a great source of magnesium. Dry roasted soybeans provide 228mg (57% RDA) of magnesium per 100 gram serving, or 392mg (98% RDA) per cup. When boiled, edamame provides 64mg (16% RDA) of magnesium per 100g serving, or 99mg (25% RDA)

BlackStrap Molasses
-Health Benefits(Via Whfoods resources online- wonderful information)
Blackstrap molasses is a sweetener that is actually good for you. Unlike refined white sugar and corn syrup, which are stripped of virtually all nutrients except simple carbohydrates, or artificial sweeteners like saccharine or aspartame, which not only provide no useful nutrients but have been shown to cause health problems in sensitive individuals, blackstrap molasses is a healthful sweetener that contains significant amounts of a variety of minerals that promote your health.

Iron for Energy

In addition to providing quickly assimilated carbohydrates, blackstrap molasses can increase your energy by helping to replenish your iron stores. Blackstrap molasses is a very good source of iron. Particularly for menstruating women, who are more at risk for iron deficiency, boosting iron stores with blackstrap molasses is a good idea--especially because, in comparison to red meat, a well known source of iron, blackstrap molasses provides more iron for less calories and is totally fat-free. Iron is an integral component of hemoglobin, which transports oxygen from the lungs to all body cells, and is also part of key enzyme systems for energy production and metabolism. And, if you're pregnant or lactating, your needs for iron increase. Growing children and adolescents also have increased needs for iron. Just 2 teaspoons of blackstrap molasses will sweetly provide you with 13.3% of the daily recommended value for iron.

A Spoonful of Molasses Helps Your Calcium Needs Go Down

Blackstrap molasses is a very good source of calcium. Calcium, one of the most important minerals in the body, is involved in a variety of physiological activities essential to life, including the ability of the heart and other muscles to contract, blood clotting, the conduction of nerve impulses to and from the brain, regulation of enzyme activity, and cell membrane function. Calcium is needed to form and maintain strong bones and teeth during youth and adolescence, and to help prevent the loss of bone that can occur during menopause and as a result of rheumatoid arthritis. Calcium binds to and removes toxins from the colon, thus reducing the risk of colon cancer, and because it is involved in nerve conduction, may help prevent migraine attacks. Two teaspoons of blackstrap molasses will meet 11.8% of your daily needs for calcium.

An Energizing Mineral-Dense Sweetener

Molasses is also an excellent source of copper and manganese and a very good source of potassium, and magnesium.

Copper, an essential component of many enzymes, plays a role in a wide range of physiological processes including iron utilization, elimination of free radicals, development of bone and connective tissue, and the production of the skin and hair pigment called melanin. Numerous health problems can develop when copper intake is inadequate, including iron deficiency anemia, ruptured blood vessels, osteoporosis, joint problems such as rheumatoid arthritis, brain disturbances, elevated LDL (bad) cholesterol and reduced HDL (good) cholesterol levels, irregular heartbeat, and increased susceptibility to infections. Using two teaspoons of blackstrap molasses to sweeten your morning cereal and the coffee or tea you drink during the day will supply you with 14.0% of the daily recommended value for copper.

That same amount of blackstrap molasses will also provide you with 18.0% of the day's needs for manganese. This trace mineral helps produce energy from protein and carbohydrates, and is involved in the synthesis of fatty acids that are important for a healthy nervous system and in the production of cholesterol that is used by the body to produce sex hormones. Manganese is also a critical component of an important antioxidant enzyme called superoxide dismutase. Superoxide dismutase (SOD) is found exclusively inside the body's mitochondria (the oxygen-based energy factories inside most of our cells) where it provides protection against damage from the free radicals produced during energy production.

Like calcium, potassium plays an important role in muscle contraction and nerve transmission. When potassium is deficient in the diet, activity of both muscles and nerves can become compromised. Potassium is an especially important mineral for atheletes since it is involved in carbohydrate storage for use by muscles as fuel and is also important in maintaining the body's proper electrolyte and acid-base (pH) balance. When potassium levels drop too low, muscles get weak, and athletes tire more easily during exercise, as potassium deficiency causes a decrease in glycogen (the fuel used by exercising muscles) storage. Simply by adding two teaspoons of blackstrap molasses to your morning smoothie, you can supply 9.7% of your potassium needs for the day along with a healthy dose of carbohydrates to burn.

Calcium's balancing major mineral, magnesium is also necessary for healthy bones and energy production. About two-thirds of the magnesium in the human body is found in our bones. Some helps give bones their physical structure, while the rest is found on the surface of the bone where it is stored for the body to draw upon as needed. Magnesium, by balancing calcium, helps regulate nerve and muscle tone. In many nerve cells, magnesium serves as Nature's own calcium channel blocker, preventing calcium from rushing into the nerve cell and activating the nerve. By blocking calcium's entry, magnesium keeps our nerves (and the blood vessels and muscles they ennervate) relaxed. If our diet provides us with too little magnesium, however, calcium can gain free entry, and the nerve cell can become overactivated, sending too many messages and causing excessive contraction. Insufficient magnesium can thus contribute to high blood pressure, muscle spasms (including spasms of the heart muscle or the spasms of the airways symptomatic of asthma), and migraine headaches, as well as muscle cramps, tension, soreness and fatigue. In two teaspoons of blackstrap molasses, you will receive 7.3% of the daily value for magnesium.

Switching from nutrient-poor sweeteners like white sugar or corn syrup, or from potentially harmful fake sweeteners like aspartame or saccharin to nutrient-dense blackstrap molasses is one simple way that eating healthy can sweeten your life.

The truth behind the phrase "slow as molasses" becomes apparent when you reflect on molasses's thick, viscous, syrupy texture. Featuring a robust bittersweet flavor, blackstrap molasses helps create the distinctive taste of dishes such as baked beans and gingerbread. Blackstrap molasses is very dark in color, having a black-brown hue.

Blackstrap molasses is just one type of molasses, the dark liquid that is the byproduct of the process of refining sugar cane into table sugar. Blackstrap molasses is made from the third boiling of the sugar syrup and is therefore the concentrated byproduct left over after the sugar's sucrose has been crystallized.

Molasses has been imported into the United States from the Caribbean Islands since the time of the early colonists. In fact, it was the most popular sweetener used until the late 19th century since it was much more affordable than refined sugar, which was very expensive at that time.

In some respects, molasses has had a rather sticky history with at least two important historical events centering around this sweet food product. The first is the Molasses Act of 1733, a tariff passed by England to try to discourage the colonists from trading with areas of the West Indies that were not under British rule. This legislation is thought to be one of the events that catalyzed pre-revolutionary colonial dissent and unrest.

It is not often that a fateful tragedy occurs that centers around a food, but unfortunately, in 1919, one such event did occur. The event is referred to as the Great Molasses Flood and occurred when a molasses storage tank holding over two million gallons of molasses broke, and its sticky content came pouring throughout the city streets of Boston, Massachussetts, traveling as fast as 35 miles per hour and creating a thirty foot tidal wave of sweetener. Unfortunately, this was not a sweet matter as twenty-one people died and significant amounts of property was destroyed.

Blackstrap molasses gained in popularity in the mid-20th century with the advent of the health food movement. Today, the largest producers of molasses are India, Brazil, Taiwan, Thailand, the Phillipines and the United States.

How to Select and Store
Look for blackstrap molasses that is unsulphured since not only does it not contain this processing chemical to which some people are sensitive, but it has a cleaner and more clarified taste. Blackstrap molasses made from organic sugar cane is also available in some markets.

Molasses should be stored in a tightly sealed container in the refrigerator or a cool, dry place. Unopened containers should keep for about one year, while opened containers should keep for about six months.

How to Enjoy
A Few Quick Serving Ideas
Mix equal parts molasses to raw honey-great spread for toast!
Adding molasses to baked beans will give them that traditionally robust flavor.
Molasses imparts a wonderfully distinctive flavor to cookies and gingerbread cakes.
Basting chicken or turkey with molasses will give it both a rich color and rich taste.
For some of our favorite recipes, click Recipes.

Individual Concerns
Blackstrap molasses is not a commonly allergenic food and is not known to contain measurable amounts of oxalates or purines.

Nutritional Profile
Blackstrap molasses is an excellent source of manganese and copper. It is a very good source of iron, calcium, potassium and magnesium. In addition, blackstrap molasses is a good source of vitamin B6 and selenium.

For an in-depth nutritional profile click here: Blackstrap molasses.

My question is, how many of you are still reading and managed to make it down to me? I know I posted a lot of information, but you have to admit, some interesting stuff! Words like Magnesium we hear all the time, but did you really know HOW important it is? Or which foods are great places to find it? A sweet lady on one of my groups told me about the Quorn- I had no idea they had such a product. It is lower calorie then tofu and from the reviews has a great flavor, Abby has problems with fungi/molds but the rest of are always adventurous with food and we plan to give it a try! :-) I had a Great Grandmother who lived to 100,and if you ask any of the surviving family that spent anytime with her about BlackStrap Molasses,they will all Groan! If you complained about feeling poorly, her first question was always "Have you moved your bowels?" If you made the mistake of admitting you had not, before you knew it, she had jammed a big spoon of BlackStrap molasses into you! Sometimes, those home remedies actually have merit. If your family has a home remedy, before you blow it off, take a minute and look it up- you might be surprised and find it has merit too! I tried to make sure that sources I gave had listings of foods that you can incorporate into your daily lives to increase some of these good minerals/supplements via your food instead of pills when possible. Abby cannot take many supplements without extreme reactions so I really rely on food to get the good stuff into her.

FYI- I want to be clear, I am not recommending that any of my readers start taking any of the above mentioned products/supplements without the guidance of a Doctor-


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