My discovery about microwaving cooking came quite by accident. We found a tiny kitten in our yard late one night. She was wet, cold, and hungry and she weighed 8 ounces (1/2 pound). The photo, taken the first night, shows a teaspoon in the foreground. She also had not been weaned and had a tough time trying to eat from the lid of a mayonnaise jar. (I don’t know anything about the mother.)
Who doesn’t love their microwave? It is one of our greatest conveniences, to have hot food or drink in seconds, or to prepare dinner in minutes.
I want to pause here with this disclaimer: if you believe the government would never allow anything to be made available to the American public that would potentially harm them in any way, you probably should not waste your time reading any further. However, if you do not know what dangers are lurking around us and want to become a more educated consumer, please read on!
The tiny kitten was very hungry and tried to eat the mixture I prepared that night. Early the next morning, I headed out to buy “kitten milk replacer.” I chose the liquid over the powder, thinking that would be the most natural and healthy choice.
Once the can was opened, the milk had to be refrigerated. For the next use, the temperature of the milk had to be warmed. The kitten (now named Pepi) ate very little at each feeding, so I warmed the small amount of milk in the microwave for a few seconds.
After a few days, Pepi became lethargic. Her weight dropped to 6 ounces, and she was sleeping most of the time - on a person or on the heating pad. I knew she was in trouble. After talking with someone who had used kitten replacement milk, I went back to the store and bought the powdered milk.
The powdered milk was mixed with warm water – not from the microwave but from the kitchen faucet. On the day following the switch to powdered milk, Pepi weighed 7 ounces and showed signs of activity. With each day on the powdered milk mixed with warm faucet water, she showed signs of improvement. She became more active as her weight continued to increase.
Here is Pepi now, at 3 1/2 years old, with her best friend. This is not a blog about vet care. If I had had unlimited funds, I would have gone to a vet; however, I couldn’t pay a small fortune for testing to see why the kitten was failing. I realized there was a problem and that something had to change. I am not convinced my vet would have realized the problem in time to save the kitten, but I feel certain I would have had a gigantic bill.
Instead, this story is about how I realized I would have soon killed Pepi by continuing to microwave her food. The stark reality of this incident led me to further investigate microwave cooking.
Although it seems there is always information available on the Internet to support both sides of any question, I feel this first-hand experience is worth sharing. For those who want to read further, here is a link by Dr. Mercola about microwave hazards: http://www.mercola.com/article/microwave/hazards2.htm
Do I still use my microwave? Yes, but only to warm up coffee and occasionally to heat leftovers. When I heat leftovers, I know I am only satisfying my momentary hunger and do not regard that food as having nutritional value.
For people suffering from significant health problems and who are trying to eat in a more healthy way, microwave cooking should be eliminated, just to be on the safe side. Heating a bowl of fresh organic broccoli in the microwave may instantly make it little more than fiber. The nutritional benefits may well have been compromised. After what I experienced with feeding my kitten, I will never believe microwave cooking is "harmless".
Yes, conventional cooking takes longer, and there might be more dishes to wash, but our health is being compromised in more ways than we can imagine. Whether it’s a three minute dinner or a bag of popcorn, stop using the microwave on a daily basis. Improving our health, like anything else worthwhile, takes a little effort!
Have you ever noticed the photos of movie stars on the red carpet? How the stars always seem to strike a very flattering pose? What is their secret? Practice!
Many people over 30 are self-conscious about having their photos taken. "Oh, I always look bad in photos" is a frequent response, but you can change that! Okay, so you may not look like a movie star, but you can certainly strike a more flattering pose. Try the following tips:
1) Practice at a mirror. Decide how much you want to smile. Tilt your head up and down and from side to side to determine your best angle. For example, a downward tilt could emphasize under-eye circles and neck creases. Think about when your eyes are more open/larger, forehead lines, and other features that might be more prominent in photos.
2) Find your best side. For most people, one side of their face is more photogenic than the other. A few folks actually look best looking straight at the camera, but that is not usually the case. Also make sure your back is straight and your shoulders are back (not rounded). That gives your neck and chin line a better angle.
3) Take practice shots. Either with your cell phone or the help of a friend with a camera, take photo after photo until you find THE pose. A friend with a camera is probably going to be the best bet. Once you find your best pose, print it, and practice it -- a LOT. Then, the next time someone wants to take your photo, you will be ready.
One other note: going back to the red carpet photos, have you ever noticed that the photographers are always shooting down? They are on a higher platform than the stars. That is another great tip; pro photographers often work from a short ladder to get a better vantage point. However, if the photographer (or you, taking selfies) is too high, your head will look disproportionately large for your body. In photography, a little height is a good thing!
Okay, so get in front of your mirror and start practicing. You will be confident the next time someone with a camera says, "Smile!"
This blog is based on an excerpt from "Lose Your Stress, Find Your Joy!" by Lisa Creedon.
What on earth is an Encouragement File? Why would I need one?
Everyone should have an Encouragement File! Regardless of who you are or your station in life, no one is "up" every single day. On days when life offers a few more challenges than usual, sometimes it is helpful to look back over positive things that have happened in your life -- things that are special just to you!
Through the years, you have probably received a number of cards and thank you notes that were thoughtfully written. Perhaps the writers of those cards and notes said lovely things about you. But where are those cards and notes now? Are they in a drawer? A box in the basement? In the trash?
If you do not already have an Encouragement File, start one today! Your file could be an actual paper file (mine is) and/or on the computer. In the file, include cards and thank you notes you have received and printed emails where a friend has written something thoughtful or said good things about you. Write down verbal compliments you have received from family, friends, your boss, even strangers. And now that you have a place to put those positive remarks, stay current with it!
Include a list of nice things you have done for others (don't include the things where people were unappreciative of your efforts!) and a list of nice things people have done for you. A few inspirational poems or articles could also be included, but let the file be mostly about you.
Make a list of your strengths and good qualities to put in the file. Sometimes it is nice to review what we really know about ourselves but forget during troubled times.
When you are having a bad day or need some inspiration, go through your Encouragement File for instant joy!
I am so thrilled with this opportunity to promote my books on The Doug Dahlgren Show. As a person who is always interested in furthering the efforts of others, it is only fitting that I highlight Doug as I begin my blog.
An extremely talented action/adventure/thriller writer, Doug Dahlgren is the author of The SON, a series of novels that are rapidly gaining readers across the country. Described as "plausible fiction" with story lines taken from current news events, and with memorable characters who seem to become a part of your life, his books keep you on the edge of your seat the entire time you are reading.
Click here to visit his show site. There are new interviews every Monday night at 7 p.m., and you can listen to past shows from the archived files.
Email firstname.lastname@example.org with questions or requests if you would like to be considered as a guest on a future program.