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November 22, 1963 President Kennedy was shot. Where was I? I had just turned 9 years old. I was in the 4th grade at McKinley elementary school in San Francisco, California. My teacher was Mrs. Johnson. I remember someone came to our classroom door and signaled for her to come out. When she came out she just said ‘Oh, my God’ and she started crying. She was trying to fight back the tears as she told us that President Kennedy had been shot.

And as a little black girl living in San Francisco I didn’t know the full effect that this assassination had on me until later in life. Later on when Martin Luther King was assassinated and then Robert Kennedy also was assassinated, and then it became clear to me that the message that I received from these three assassinations was that if you really try to help people and do good in this country, and especially helping poor people, helping black people, helping disenfranchised people, that, you’re going to be killed. And if you’re a black leader, willing to speak out, we will shoot you down.

In my life I have been called upon to be a leader and I know that that the assassinations have carried on inside me, this is how it impacted me. knowing that when you speak up, maybe someone may want to kill you or they may not try to kill you physically, but they can use words, or they can use discord, but other people, slander and all kinds of things against you, when you’re trying to do the thing that’s right. So I understood at an early age that just because you’re speaking out to do something good, your intentions are good- Even if you get results and the results are good or even great, that doesn’t mean that everybody is going to be happy about what you do.

So as we remember President John Fitzgerald Kennedy, who was a very revered President in his day, that we must remember that whenever we step out to do something and that’s just being ourselves and walking in our purpose and doing good in this world while we are here, that there will always be somebody to try to shoot us down and it doesn’t necessarily have to be a physical bullet, it could be something verbal. It can be any kind of impediment to be put in your way, just like our President Barak Obama is experiencing today with so many political people who have been negotiating for years, but they don’t want to negotiate now. So he’s stepping out to do something great and he has all kinds of opposition. But you know, he’s still doing it, and I hope that despite the dreariness and sadness of something so horrible happening like this assassination in our country’s history that those who hear my voice will be encouraged to know that we still must do that thing that we must do and despite what others…how others may respond, react or not react or not respond, we must do the thing that we must do.

Thank you for listening,



The Latest News About Brussels Sprouts

The Latest News About Brussels Sprouts
You’ll find nearly 100 studies in PubMed (the health research database at the National Library of Medicine in Washington, D.C.) that are focused on Brussels sprouts, and over half of those studies involve the health benefits of this cruciferous vegetable in relationship to cancer. This connection between Brussels sprouts and cancer prevention should not be surprising since Brussels sprouts provide special nutrient support for three body systems that are closely connected with cancer development as well as cancer prevention. These three systems are (1) the body’s detox system, (2) its antioxidant system, and (3) its inflammatory/anti-inflammatory system. Chronic imbalances in any of these three systems can increase risk of cancer, and when imbalances in all three systems occur simultaneously, the risk of cancer increases significantly. Among all types of cancer, prevention of the following cancer types is most closely associated with intake of Brussels sprouts: bladder cancer, breast cancer, colon cancer, lung cancer, prostate cancer, and ovarian cancer.

What’s New and Beneficial About Brussels Sprouts

Brussels sprouts can provide you with some special cholesterol-lowering benefits if you will use a steaming method when cooking them. The fiber-related components in Brussels sprouts do a better job of binding together with bile acids in your digestive tract when they’ve been steamed. When this binding process takes place, it’s easier for bile acids to be excreted, and the result is a lowering of your cholesterol levels. Raw Brussels sprouts still have cholesterol-lowering ability—just not as much as steamed Brussels sprouts.
Brussels sprouts may have unique health benefits in the area of DNA protection. A recent study has shown improved stability of DNA inside of our white blood cells after daily consumption of Brussels sprouts in the amount of 1.25 cups. Interestingly, it’s the ability of certain compounds in Brussels sprouts to block the activity of sulphotransferase enzymes that researchers believe to be responsible for these DNA-protective benefits.
For total glucosinolate content, Brussels sprouts are now known to top the list of commonly eaten cruciferous vegetables. Their total glucosinolate content has been shown to be greater than the amount found in mustard greens, turnip greens, cabbage, kale, cauliflower, or broccoli. In Germany, Brussels sprouts account for more glucosinolate intake than any other food except broccoli. Glucosinolates are important phytonutrients for our health because they are the chemical starting points for a variety of cancer-protective substances. All cruciferous vegetables contain glucosinolates and have great health benefits for this reason. But it’s recent research that’s made us realize how especially valuable Brussels sprouts are in this regard.
The cancer protection we get from Brussels sprouts is largely related to four specific glucosinolates found in this cruciferous vegetable: glucoraphanin, glucobrassicin, sinigrin, and gluconasturtiian. Research has shown that Brussels sprouts offer these cancer-preventive components in special combination.
Brussels sprouts have been used to determine the potential impact of cruciferous vegetables on thyroid function. In a recent study, 5 ounces of Brussels sprouts were consumed on a daily basis for 4 consecutive weeks by a small group of healthy adults and not found to have an unwanted impact on their thyroid function. Although follow-up studies are needed, this study puts at least one large stamp of approval on Brussels sprouts as a food that can provide fantastic health benefits without putting the thyroid gland at risk.
WHFoods Recommendations

You’ll want to include Brussels sprouts as one of the cruciferous vegetables you eat on a regular basis if you want to receive the fantastic health benefits provided by the cruciferous vegetable family. At a minimum, include cruciferous vegetables as part of your diet 2-3 times per week, and make the serving size at least 1-1/2 cups. Even better from a health standpoint, enjoy Brussels sprouts and other vegetables from the cruciferous vegetable group 4-5 times per week and increase your serving size to 2 cups.

It is very important not to overcook Brussels sprouts. Not only do they lose their nutritional value and taste but they will begin to emit the unpleasant sulfur smell associated with overcooked cruciferous vegetables. To help Brussels sprouts cook more quickly and evenly cut each sprout into quarters. Let them sit for at least 5 minutes to bring out the health-promoting qualities and then steam them for 5 minutes. Serve with our Honey Mustard Dressing to add extra tang and flavor to Brussels sprouts.

Cruciferous Vegetable Benefits

All cruciferous vegetables—including Brussels sprouts—provide integrated nourishment across a wide variety of nutritional categories and provide broad support across a wide variety of body systems as well. For more on cruciferous vegetables see:

Eating Healthy with Cruciferous Vegetables
Feeling Great with Cruciferous Vegetables
Health Benefits

Brussels sprouts provide numerous health benefits including:

Anti-inflammatory benefits
Antioxidant properties
Detoxification benefits
Cancer prevention
Cardiovascular support
Digestive support
For more details on Brussels sprouts’ health benefits, see this section of our Brussels sprouts write-up.

Nutritional Profile

Brussels sprouts are an excellent source of immune-supportive vitamin C and anti-inflammatory vitamin K. They are a very good source of immune-supportive vitamin A (through their concentration of carotenoid phytonutrients), enzyme-activating manganese, heart-healthy fiber, potassium,vitamin B6 and fiber, and energy-producing vitamin B1. Additionally, they are a good source of heart-healthy omega-3 fatty acids, vitamin E, and magnesium, energy-producing iron, phosphorus, and vitamin B2, bone-healthy copper and calcium, and muscular-system supportive protein.

Brussels Sprouts as a “Goitrogenic” Food

Brussels sprouts sometimes referred to as a “goitrogenic” food. Yet, contrary to popular belief, according to the latest studies, foods themselves—Brussels sprouts included—are not “goitrogenic” in the sense of causing goiter whenever they are consumed, or even when they are consumed in excess. In fact, most foods that are commonly called “goitrogenic”—such as the cruciferous vegetables (including broccoli, kale, and cauliflower) and soyfoods—do not interfere with thyroid function in healthy persons even when they are consumed on a daily basis. Nor is it scientifically correct to say that foods “contain goitrogens,” at least not if you are thinking about goitrogens as a category of substances like proteins, carbohydrates, or vitamins. With respect to the health of our thyroid gland, all that can be contained in a food are nutrients that provide us with a variety of health benefits but which, under certain circumstances, can also interfere with thyroid function. The term “goitrogenic food” makes it sound as if something is wrong with the food, but that is simply not the case. What causes problems for certain individuals is not the food itself but the mismatched nature of certain substances within the food to their unique health circumstances. For more, see an An Up-to-Date Look at Goitrogenic Substances in Food.

For more on this nutrient-rich vegetable, including references related to this Latest News, see our write-up on Brussels sprouts.

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