Friday, March 30, 2012

Do You Want Wild Plants With That? Defeat Cancer. Angiogenesis. Edible Weeds. Recipes. Seward's Folly. Reagan. Drapes.

For "Foodie Friday":

Why Wild Plants Can Protect You From Cancer

"Plants, and most especially, plants growing in harsh, exposed environments out in the wild, produce a bounty of powerful health-protective natural chemical compounds which can provide broad spectrum health benefits against cancer and other chronic human diseases.

Why do plants manufacture compounds (phytochemicals) that uniquely protect against chronic human diseases?

Plants are clearly not producing powerful phytochemicals for the sole purpose of benefitting humans. Plants have no other means to protect themselves except to creatively synthesize and accumulate a sophisticated assortment of natural components in their organs (such as leaves, roots or fruits).

This internal phytochemical cocktail helps the otherwise unprotected plants to endure environmental stress and promote their own survival, or at least improve their chances of passing on their seeds to grow the next year. Phytochemicals offer remarkably sophisticated natural defenses that can help plants to thrive in even hostile locations.

What happens when humans eat these flavonoid-containing plants, like berries?

The phytochemicals naturally moderate the body’s reaction to diseases, stress and allergens. These same phytochemicals interact with target sites in the body to protect against foreign invaders like bacterial cells, damaging rogue enzymes, or free-radical damage. Flavonoids protect the body’s cells from the damaging effects of reactive oxygen species, such as those from ultraviolet sunlight rays or pollution exposure. By inducing antioxidant enzymes in your body, the flavonoids help your body to cope with toxins.

Be proactive about fighting cancer with your own diet. Mix and match a variety of colorful fruits and vegetables on the menu each week, and keep an eye out for the wild ones – their rugged survival strategies translate into the most versatile and health beneficial phytochemicals for you."   Full article at:


What You Can Eat to Defeat Cancer

By William W. Li, M.D.
President and Medical Director, The Angiogenesis Foundation

"Dr. Oz and I recently spoke about important new research that is showing that how you select, prepare and consume foods can be a powerful weapon for preventing cancer. The reason for this lies in our capillaries, the thousands of tiny blood vessels present in almost every square millimeter of our bodies.

The growth of new capillary blood vessels is called angiogenesis, a vital process for reproduction and healing. Cancer turns the body against itself by hijacking the angiogenesis process. Just as healthy tissues require oxygen and nutrients, malignant tumors need a blood supply to fuel their growth. But, unlike normal tissues, cancer keeps angiogenesis permanently switched on to ensure that it has a dedicated, uninterrupted blood supply.

Angiogenesis Makes Cancer Dangerous
A major reason cancer is so frustratingly difficult to cure is that by the time it can be detected, it is often very advanced, and like all advanced diseases, much more difficult to treat. In a person with advanced cancer, uncontrolled angiogenesis keeps cancer cells growing and allows them to spread. However, without angiogenesis, cancers can’t grow and become dangerous. This is why the microscopic cancers that form in our bodies all the time are mostly harmless. These cancers aren’t even visible on a standard X-ray or body scan. So, to effectively prevent cancer, angiogenesis needs to be brought under control before the tumor can get a foothold. This is where your everyday diet comes into play." Complete article at:


Benefits of Wild Edible Plants

"There are numerous benefits to eating wild edibles such as:

They are free.

They are genetically stronger than other food.

Longer root systems make most weeds drought-resistant.

Most edible plants and weeds are more nutritious than hybridized store produce.

Eating local wild plants means that the plant fights off the same organisms as your body therefore making them highly beneficial for the immune system.

Wildcrafting (picking your own) wild edibles means you get exercise, vitamin D (sunshine) and being in a natural setting is relaxing." From:


Guide to Common Edible Wild Plants


"It’s often said that the last thing you need to worry about when in a survival situation is what you’re going to eat. The human body is highly resilient, and can go without food for longer than you think. Shelter and water, on the other hand, are pretty much non-negotiable in order to survive.

However, it is possible to familiarize yourself with edible wild plants before you get into a survival situation, in which case you’ll have a good idea of which wild plants you can eat if necessary. In addition, once you learn to identify some of these common edible wild plants, you might be able to add them to your diet while you’re still in the city."  More at:


Preparing Plants You Can Eat

plants you can eat

"Although some plants or plant parts are edible raw, you must cook others to be edible or palatable. "Edible" means that a plant or food will provide you with necessary nutrients, while "palatable" means that it actually is pleasing to eat. Many wild plants are edible but barely palatable. It is a good idea to learn to identify, prepare, and eat wild foods.

Methods used to improve the taste of plant food include soaking, boiling, cooking or leaching. Leaching is done by crushing the food (for example, acorns), placing it in a strainer and pouring boiling water through it or immersing it in running water.

Boil leaves, stems and buds until tender, changing the water, if necessary, to remove any bitterness.

Boil, bake or roast tubers and roots. Drying helps to remove caustic oxalates from some roots like those in the Arum family.

Leach acorns in water, if necessary, to remove the bitterness. Some nuts, such as chestnuts, are good raw but taste better roasted.

You can eat many grains and seeds raw until they mature. When hard or dry, you may have to boil or grind them into meal or flour.

The sap from many trees, such as maples, birches, walnuts and sycamores, contains sugar. You may boil these saps down to a syrup for sweetening. It takes about 35 liters of maple sap to make one liter of maple syrup!" More at:


Edible Weeds

"Why apply chemicals to remove your weeds, when you can harvest them to eat! We wander through a backyard to assemble a salad with a plant expert:"

Edible Wild Plants Defined
"Edible wild plants are wild plants with one or more parts that can be used for food if gathered at the appropriate stage of growth, and properly prepared. Edible wild plants could be weeds growing in urban areas to native plants growing in deep wilderness." More at:


Edible Wild Plants - The Real Organic Food


Environment Wetlands Yard/Meadow/Prairie Eastern woods Western woods
Mountains Desert/Prairie Seashore

The Seasons
Winter Spring Summer Fall

Food type Nuts, Bark, Roots, Leaves Berries/Fruit

More at:


Foraging Foodie, Edible wild plants and Recipes:












"I've collected, used and tweaked many recipes over the years. I want to add preparation pictures for each recipe and I don't have all of these yet so please bear with me." Recipes by ingredient, and Dishes and meals at:


If you can't pick your own wild plants, buy organic or local produce, if possible

"Some pesticides found in commercially-grown produce are also suspected carcinogens. Organic foods are free of these pesticides, and locally grown produce is less likely to have been treated with chemicals to prevent spoilage."


What you need to know about cancer and diet

"Not all health problems are avoidable, but you have more control over your health than you may think. Research shows that a large percentage of cancer-related deaths—maybe even the majority—are directly linked to lifestyle choices such as smoking, drinking, a lack of exercise, and an unhealthy diet. Avoiding cigarettes, minimizing alcohol, and getting regular exercise are a great start to an anti-cancer lifestyle. But to best support your health, you also need to look at your eating habits.

What you eat—and don’t eat—has a powerful effect on your health, including your risk of cancer. Without knowing it, you may be eating many foods that fuel cancer, while neglecting the powerful foods and nutrients that can protect you. If you change your diet and behaviors, you can minimize your risk of disease and possibly even stop cancer in its tracks.

Why plant-based foods are cancer-fighting powerhouses

It comes down to this: Plants have less fat, more fiber, and more cancer-fighting nutrients. These three elements work together to support your immune system and help your body fight off cancer.

The best diet for preventing or fighting cancer is a predominantly plant-based diet that includes a variety of vegetables, fruits, and whole grains. A plant-based diet means eating mostly foods that come from plants: vegetables, fruits, nuts, grains, and beans. 

The less processed these foods are—the less they’ve been cooked, peeled, mixed with other ingredients, stripped of their nutrients, or otherwise altered from the way they came out of the ground—the better.

There are many ways to add plant-based foods to your diet. A nice visual reminder is to aim for a plate of food that is filled at least two-thirds with whole grains, vegetables, beans, or fruit. Dairy products, fish, and meat should take up no more than a third of the plate. Keep in mind that you don’t need to go completely vegetarian. Instead, focus on adding “whole” foods, which are foods close to their original form. Just as important, try to minimize or reduce the amount of processed foods you eat. Eat an apple instead of drinking a glass of apple juice, for example. Or enjoy a bowl of oatmeal with raisins instead of an oatmeal raisin cookie."  More at:


On This Day:

Seward's Folly, Mar 30, 1867:

"U.S. Secretary of State William H. Seward signs a treaty with Russia for the purchase of Alaska for $7 million. Despite the bargain price of roughly two cents an acre, the Alaskan purchase was ridiculed in Congress and in the press as "Seward's folly," "Seward's icebox," and President Andrew Johnson's "polar bear garden."

The czarist government of Russia, which had established a presence in Alaska in the mid-18th century, first approached the United States about selling the territory during the administration of President James Buchanan, but negotiations were stalled by the outbreak of the Civil War. After 1865, Seward, a supporter of territorial expansion, was eager to acquire the tremendous landmass of Alaska, an area roughly one-fifth the size of the rest of the United States. He had some difficulty, however, making the case for the purchase of Alaska before the Senate, which ratified the treaty by a margin of just one vote on April 9, 1867. Six months later, Alaska was formally handed over from Russia to the United States. Despite a slow start in U.S. settlement, the discovery of gold in 1898 brought a rapid influx of people to the territory, and Alaska, rich in natural resources, has contributed to American prosperity ever since."


Reagan is shot, Mar 30, 1981:

"On this day in1981, President Ronald Reagan is shot while leaving the Washington Union Hotel in Washington, D.C.

Reagan's assailant, later identified as 25-year-old John Hinckley Jr., approached the president as he left the hotel after speaking to a union convention, and fired five to six shots from a .22 caliber gun in his direction. The president later recalled in his autobiography that the shots sounded like firecrackers. He turned to the agent next to him and said what the hell is that? One bullet hit Reagan in the chest. Immediately the Secret Service pulled Reagan into a waiting limousine and sped to George Washington University Hospital, where he walked into the emergency room on his own. White House Press Secretary James Brady, a policeman and a Secret Service agent were also injured in the shooting. Each man survived, but Brady sustained severe head injuries that caused permanent disability.

First lady Nancy Reagan arrived at the hospital soon after the shooting and sat by the president's side as he recovered. Reagan was released from the hospital less than two weeks later and quickly returned to his presidential duties.

Reagan recalled the day of the assassination attempt in great detail in his autobiography. He remembered lying on a gurney in the emergency room while medical personnel, much to his disappointment, cut away his brand new pin-striped suit. As he started to lose consciousness, he felt a woman's hand in his. He did not know if it was Nancy or a nurse and in typical Reagan fashion---always ready with a joke---he asked, Who is holding my hand? Does Nancy know about us?

In the years after the shooting, Reagan also recalled an ominous and prophetic visit he had made before the attempt on his life to the same theater in which Abraham Lincoln had been shot. While at the theater Reagan had mused that although presidential security had greatly improved since Lincoln's time, it was still possible for someone who had enough determination to get close enough to a president to shoot him.

The assailant Hinckley, who acted alone, confessed a bizarre reason for the shooting--Hinckley was obsessed with the actress Jodie Foster and claimed he shot the president in order to impress her. Hinckley was arrested, judged not guilty by reason of insanity and placed in a mental hospital, where he remains today."



It wasn't supposed to rain, but it did!  So Ray and I couldn't put the trim back on the cargo trailer.  During a break in the rain, we tried to start the mower with the new air filter, but it still wouldn't stay running!  So we put it in the back of my van to take it to a repair shop.  It was too wet to mow, we just wanted to see, one more time, if we could use it.  On to the next job, the drapes for the trailer, maybe that won't be brushed with Murphy's Law.

I had the measurements of the windows but needed to find out if the fabric that I had bought at the thrift shop would be enough.  We made newspaper templates of each window, moved the coffee table out of the way, and laid them out on the fabric on my living room floor.  We moved them around to different places on the fabric, adding for the pleats and hems.   After finally determining the best way to use the fabric, Ray cut it.  Poor Ray, he never knows what we will be doing next!  Now I just have to find the time to sew them.

The rain shower had brought humidity, so we were glad to work inside in the AC, even though it wasn't a hot day.


Dizzy-Dick said...

We eat mostly veggies at my place. I get protein from cottage cheese, chicken breasts, and some salmon once a week or so.

LakeConroePenny,TX said...

Thank you for your comment, DD.

Most dried beans, and tree nuts are a great source of protein, too, as well as adding fiber to the diet.