While enjoying dinner with friends recently the subject came up about Alzheimer’s a natrual part of the aging process and how can we reduce the risk? My German Grandmother lived to be over a hundred and was sharp as a tact, my Mexican mom from San Sebastian lived to be well into her 80’s after having birthed and raised 20 kids, and almost 70 grandkids. She was a tiny little thing who remembered the smallest details of her life and of those around her. I gathered from these personal experiences that neither dementia nor Alzheimer’s are a normal part of normal aging.

I got on-line and will share with you what I found.


Omega-3 fats like DHA are called “essential” fatty acids because your body doesn’t make them on its own. So you must acquire them through outside sources. Believe me, this is one fat you do NOT want to be deficient in as omega-3 can:

    • Reduce your risk of heart disease
    • Help prevent cancer, including liver and prostrate cancer
    • Alleviate depression
    • Fight inflammation in your body

Fish oil is also known to play a role to preventing Alzheimer’s disease, and UCLA researchers hve discovered why. Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), and omega-3 acid found in fish oil, increases the production of LR11, a protein that destroys a protein that forms “plaques” associated with Alzheimer’s disease. LR11 is also found in low levels in Alzheimer’s patients, and since this protein helps prevent the toxic plaques that are thought to harm neurons in your brain, it is believed to be a factor in causing the disease. The researchers examined both fish oil in the diet and DHA administered directly to the neurons grown in a laboratory. DHA also had a beneficial impact on human neuronal cells in culture. The researchers concluded that high levels of DHA lead to abundant LR11, which seems to protect against Alzheimer’s. Conversely, low levels of LR11 lead to the formation of beta amyloidal plaques that harm your brain. As this study mentions, omega-3 fats are also widely known to prevent Alzheimer’s desease, which is not suprising when you consider that DHA is the most abundant essential fatty acid in your brain.

Your best Sources of Omega-3

The most valuable omega-3 fats are the longer-chain fats like DHA and EPA. These are nearly exclusively found in marine sources like fish and fish oils. However, because of pollution concerns I do not recommend that you increase your intake of fish to get your omega-3. And don’t for a moment think that farm-raised fish are any better–they are FAR worse than wild-caught fish and should be avoided. This includes the salmon from Costco.

Instead, opt for a high-quality omega-3 supplement–but not just ANY omega-3 supplement will do. One of the best sources of Omega-3 fasts that is highly stable and pure is from Antartic krill oil. (I have not found a local source of this) If you prefer a choice closer to home, chia seeds, (a Mexican super food) are high in omega and have the added benefits of controlling the humidity in your body, controlling weight, and improving digestion.

Omega-3 fats are an excellent tool for fighting Alzheimer’s, but they are far from the only one. The experts (I CAN NEVER FIND OUT WHO THESE GUYS ARE) are predicting that more than 5 million Americans currently have Alzheimer’s, and by 2050 that could increase to between 11 million and 16 million people in the United States alone.

Here are a couple of suggestions to help maintain your brain power.

  1. Eat a nutrtious diet, including regularly consuming a healthy source of omega-3 fats, foods rich in enzymes, vitamins, minerals, and hight quality protein. Translates to eat your greens, cut down on sugar, fats and grains. Figure out how to get chia seeds in your diet. ( You can soak them and drink them, grind them up and add them to cereals and pick them up at the farmers market at Paradise Cultural Center each saturday.
  2. Exercise. Studies have shown that is protects your brain (along with being good for a host of other reasons). Flexible body. Flexible mind.
  3. Avoid and remove mercury from your body. This means not only removing any existing mercury in your body, but also striving not to take in any more. (via polluted fish, thimersal-containing vaccines or flu shots) Dental amalgam fillings are one of the major sources of mercury in many people’s bodies. (My dentist says that only happens a few weeks after the actual filling is put in)
  4. Avoid aluminum, as it has been linked to Alzheimer’s. It can be found in anitperspirants, try using natural deodorants like baking soda under arms after showering, or natural crystal minerals you can get at the health food store, wet them and run them under your arms. These methods both work.
  5. Drinking water: know your source and go with a high ph of over 7.5 which is slightly alkaline.
  6. Aluminum cookware.. really?? Are you still using aluminum? OMG! Invest in a good set of stainless steal cookware or unchipped enamel please.
  7. Challenge your mind. Doing activities such as learning new things may help build up the brain, making it less susceptible to the lesions associated with Alzheimer’s disease. Bridge, crossword puzzles, Sudoku, or taking a class can give your brain a work out.

It comes down to: We don’t really know what the future will bring, so live in the moment, love those around you and play alot.

Home Child Birthing in Mexico

A newborn baby with umbilical cord ready to be...

A newborn baby with umbilical cord ready to be clamped (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Home Child Birthing in Mexico

For as long as ever, giving birth at home was the most normal thing to do. Mothers were attended by women of knowledge, apprentices and female relatives. My grandmother was born at home, and remembers well when her sister was born on the farm in Missouri, 1898. Aunt Molly, premature, was put in a pan in the wood stove oven to be kept warm. Well, that was not so great and things changed. By 1900’s American women slowly began changing their traditional birth practices by going to hospitals (still do), who (still do) charge plenty. After a couple of generations of this practice, most knowledge of the mechanics of childbirth, herbs and midwifery were lost and our Mothers would not think of having a baby at home.

Along came the 60’s with its movements, bringing home birthing onto the communes due to the desire to have the children born in natural and loving settings without exposure to chemicals, drugs, bright lights, and bad vibes. Thus the knowledge of midwifery was reborn. (

NOW, modern American women are more open-minded, even exploring the idea of a home birth with trained midwifes or nurse-midwifes for low-risk, healthy pregnancies.


Home birthing is traditional and widely practiced throughout Mexico. Midwifes are certified, associated and supported by the National Health Service which is said to be one of the best in the world. They have a vast knowledge of herbs they use with excellent results. Midwifes are federally and state licensed being responsible to the Secretaria de Salud, and Registro civil in signing the weighty Mexican birth certifercate. The license is reactivated each year through required continuing education. Midwifes usually have a OBGYN that they prefer to work with, but are willing to work with yours.

It happened that my daughter experienced a fast and rather extraordinary birthing with a midwife at her home here in Puerto Vallarta. The care during, before, and after the birth was professional and through. The results;  a beautiful baby girl. The Midwife, 70 year old Tomasa, hand made a post postpartum body wrap out of unbleached muslin that brought great relief to my daughter.

Home birth might be an option for you if:

  • You are having a healthy, low-risk pregnancy
  • You want to avoid episiotomy, cesarean section, epidural, and other interventions
  • You want to be surrounded by family and friends
  • You want to be free to move around, change positions, take a shower, and eat or drink freely during labor
  • You want to enjoy the comforts of home and familiar surroundings
  • You want to save money, Midwifes in Mexico charge about 250 usd.

Home birth is not for you if:

  • You are diabetic
  • You have chronic high blood pressure, toxemia or smoke
  • You have experienced preterm labor in the past, or maybe at risk for preterm labor.
  • Are taking certain prescribed meds
  • Against the advise of your M.D.
Children, Baby new born

Photo credit: Wikipedia

It happened that we just had a home birth in our family. Ana Valentina was born to our sister on January 6th. Maloy was attended to a very capable and experienced midwife, Angela, who was soft and loving throughout the process. Angela gently guided the new mother through labor with clear instruction, kindness, compassion and encouragement. The whole process took about 6 hours with the 4 other sisters on hand for the birthing. It was a time of bonding between laughter, jokes, chicken soup, and clock watching.

Information and contact for midwifes may be sought by writing me, or catching me on Facebook

Sugar Babies

Sugar Babies


(Photo credit: tannazie)

I am always somewhat amazed at the farmers market where the beautiful and enticing cakes, cookies, muffins, turnovers, rolls, pies and every kind of sugar laden pastry is offered. People line up for these treats.. well, read on dear reader for a different take on the sugar binge.

The big sugar companies are taking some marketing lessons from the tobacco industry by denying any connection between their product and obesity and diabetes epidemics going on in the industrialized world. They also have acess to immense power and give generously to the powers that be to ensure that their products are protected.

Sugar is one of the biggest enemies in the pursuit of health and longevity. It appears in nearly ALL processed foods and drinks–even things you wouldn’t think would be sweetened, like canned beans, Mayonnaise, and pickles even baby food– make it virtually impossible to avoid.

It is a proven fact that sugar increases your insulin and Lipton levels and decreases receptor sensitivity for both of these vital hormones. This leads directly to:

  • High blood pressure and high cholesterol
  • Heart disease
  • Diabetes
  • Weight gain
  • Premature aging
  • Cancers feeds off sugars

Sound Familiar?

One way in which sugar has been linked to the obesity epidemic, for instance, is that when consumed in quantities, sugars cause hormonal changes that lead to over eating.

Sugar suppresses your immune system, contributing to allergies, and it is responsible for a number of digestive disorders. It also contributes to depression, and its excess consumption is, in fact associated with many of the chronic diseases in the developed countries, including the big C.


Sugars (Photo credit: QuintanaRoo)

The sugar industry naturaly want to down play its health risk because there is big money involved. Well, who can blame them? Take a look at some of these figures.. we are talking about some big bucks

The average American eats well in excess of 150 pounds of sugar a year, or about 2.5 pounds each week. This is no surprise because the single largest source of calories in the United States is high-fructose corn syrup from soft drinks. And Mexico, loving and admiring their northern neighbors, embraces their worst habits and is 2nd in line when it come to sugar consumption, 1st in line when it come to obesity.

The sugar industry that has been stealing more and more attention and market share. However, most of these artificial sweeteners are a even greter heslth risk then straight up sugar and should be avoided. But that’s another story.

Having said that, due to the artificial sweetener invasion, the sugar folks are coming on stronger than ever, and tagging into the “natural” sweet treat as a fine part of your diet. Of course most people don’t eat just a teaspoon of sugar a week; they eat over 2 pounds, which is not surprising when certain studies show how that clean white powder of sugar is addictive. Even your pets will get addicted to the taste and beg for more.. a little candy can’t hurt? .. Better think again as our pets are more and more prone to human diseases.

And what about the kids?

They are started on the sugar binge from the time they are tiny. A new study uncovered another contributing factor to the rise of childhood obesity directly related to the amount of added sugars in the kids diet. Those who consumed higher amounts of added sugars in their diets receive less calories from healthy foods rich in fiber, vitamins, and minerals. This means the more added sugars from sodas and sweets in kids diets, the fewer the number of good nutrients their bodes get in order to remain healthy. I see this with my grandson who loves the sugary fruit drinks and jello snacks. He get a sugar high, then crashes, gets irritable and wants MORE sugar. When it comes to meal times.. it’s a struggle to get him to eat regular food.

Consider the problems that schools and parents are having with hyper active children, sometimes they call ADHD or Attention Deficit Disorder, this diagnostic leads to medicating the kids to help them focus. Parents have to be brave and tough to help these sugar babies over the crave, just try and keep the kids off the sugar and see a real tizzy fit.

 A bitter pill to swallow huh??

Who does not love a great sweet? Be well advised to be prudent in your choices and cut the sugar down. Try using real alternative like agave syrup and little by little you can break the habit.

And PLEASE do not reward your sweet pet with sweets. Or kids.

Marinated Asian Kale Salad

Marinated Asian Kale Salad



1. Make sure the greens are thinly sliced, you can even shred the kale with your food processor with the slicing disk on.

2. Put the shredded kale in a large bowl and mash in with a fork the oil, red miso, shredded ginger, and lime juice. Make sure the miso and oil is well blended. You can even massage the kale with your hands to make sure the kale is well coated.

3.  Serve now or let the kale marinate in the refrigerator for at least 1 hr., it can even sit overnight. The longer it marinates the more tender the kale will be.

4. When you are ready to serve add in the bell peppers, pea shoots or sunflower sprouts, cucumber, green onion, and sesame seeds. Enjoy!

Gluten Intolerance, Fad or Myth???

Gluten (Wheat) Intolerance, Fad or Myth???

It happened that my daughters’ friend came down on vacation and announced that she could not eat wheat, rye, barley and oats. She had been diagnosed with gluten intolerance. She remembered her Aunt had the same intolerance to wheat and grain products. Early on it seemed to be a rare occurrence, but now it pops up in one out of every 130 including kids and babies. This intrigued me. So, as you know, I dug into the internet consulting Prof. Google and here is what they say about what they call Celiac disease.

The symptoms of Celiac Disease (CD) vary so widely among patients that there is no such thing as a “typical Celiac.” The amount of intestinal damage that has occured and the length of time nutrient absorption has been abnormal seem to be the factors that determine the type and severity of symptoms experienced. It is interesting to note that people with CD report no symptoms at all.

Celiac disease is one of the great mimics in a gastroenterology in particular and medicine in general. Of 100 patients with CD, just over 10 percent with classical overt symptoms of malabsorption such as wight loss, diarrhea and nutritional deficiencies. About 10 percent are incorrectly diagnosed for some length of time, in some cases years. Forty percent in and atypical manner, which leads to lengthy delay in diagnosis. About 33 percent of patients have clinically silent disease and 7 percent have latent CD.

Celiac disease may also present itself in less obvious ways, including irritability or depressions, anemia, upset stomach, joint pain, muscle cramps, skin rash, mouth sores, dental and bone disorders (such as osteoporosis), and tingling in the legs and feet (neuropathy).

Some indications of malabsorption that may result from Celiac disease include:

  • Weight loss
  • Diarrhea
  • Abdominal cramps, gas and bloating
  • General weakness
  • Foul-smelling or grayish stools that may be fatty or oily
  • Stunted growth (in children)
  • Osteoporosis
  • Patterns on the tongue like a map
  • Dermatitis herpetiformis

Dermatitis herpetiformis is an itchy, blistering skin disease that also stems from gluten intolerance. The rash usually occurs on the elbows, knees and buttocks. Dermatitis herpetiformis can cause significant intestinal damage identical to that of Celiac disease. However, it may not produce noticeable digestive symptoms. This disease is treated with a gluten-free diet, in addition to medication to control the rash.

The good news is that the symptoms can be controlled and the condition improved by sticking to a gluten free diet. It is a diet completely free of ingredients derived from gluten-containing cereals: Wheat (including Kamut and spelt), barley, rye oat, as well as the use of gluten as a food additive in the form of flavoring, stabilizing or thickening agent. Greater news.. there has been a market response to this gluten free diet. (We are a bit behind here in Mexico, but I hear it’s on the horizon).

breadThe bad news is.. Good-bye to cakes, pies, cookies, breads, soy sauce, oatmeal… pancakes, waffles, pasta, cereals, gravy, and sauces. There seems to be gluten or wheat in just about everything dear to our stomachs and hearts. There are some gluten free products popping up, check for local bakery, pancakes, and cereals, and the frozen food section at your favorite super market.

Bottom line: If you have chronic intestinal inflammations, colitis, constipation, cut down on the wheat products and see how you feel. Most of the wheat is consumed in bread, pasta, and cold or cooked boxed cereals. By the way, white flour, whole wheat, whole grain, or organic wheat, they have the same gluten. Even sprouted wheat has gluten.

Please don’t be fooled by the flourless statement on some imported breads, this has nothing to do with the gluten or wheat content of a product.

Questions.. comments?? See us at the Organic Select farm stand in the farmers co-op market at the Paradise Community Center every Saturday from 10-2

Holy Kale Drink

Holy Kale Drink



  • 3 large organic kale leaves
  • ½ cup pineapple
  • 2 celery stalks with leaves
  • 2 carrots, scrubbed

Run it all through juicer and enjoy!

Organic Select Cooks

Organic Select Cooks

Friday April 2oth 11:30-3:30

Location:  Organic Select Garden Kitchen, Puerto Vallarta

Organic Select Cooking Class

Theme: Traditional Mexican Food With Fresh Organics

Includes: Recipes, Demo, Lunch, Punch, Appropriate wine

450 pesos public, 400 pesos O.S. Members

Limited to 10 students.

Email to reserve your space: