Dental fluorosis is a condition caused by an excessive intake of fluorides - while the teeth develop - characterized mainly by mottling of the enamel, although the skeletal system is also affected.
Most frequently asked questions relating to fluoride
1) I heard fluoride is a poison. Is this true?
Yes. Fluoride is an acute toxin with a rating slightly higher than that of lead.According to "Clinical Toxicology of Commercial products," 5th Edition, 1984, lead is given a toxicity rating of 3 to 4, and Fluoride is rated at 4 (3 = moderately toxic, 4 = very toxic). On December 7, 1992, the new EPA Maximum Contaminant Level (MCL) for lead was set at 0.015 ppm, with a goal of 0.0ppm. The MCL for fluoride is currently set for 4.0ppm - that's over 350 times the permissable level of lead.Fluoride is also considered toxic waste. It is one of the most bone seeking elements known to mankind. The US Public Health Service has stated that fluoride makes the bones more brittle and the dental enamel more porous.
2) How much fluoride am I taking in?
Current intake is estimated to be between 5 and 7 mg/day in "optimally fluoridated" areas. Current fluoride intake is equally divided between drinking water (in fluoridated areas), food, other beverages, and dental products, meaning that even if you don't live in a fluoridated area, fluoride is endangering your health. Average fluoride content in juices is 0.02 to 2.80 parts per million, in part because of variations in fluoride concentrations of water used in production. Children's ingestion of fluoride from juices and juice-flavored beverages can be quite substantial and a crucial factor in developing fluorosis. Grape juice has been found to contain up to 6.8 mg/L of fluoride, a can of chicken soup up to 4 mg of fluoride. Fluoride can be found in water, toothpaste, mouthwash, Dentist's treatment, fluoride pills, juice, soft drinks, canned food, commercial fruit and vegetables, Teflon and Tefal coated items (such as frying pans), etc. (Note: No "optimal" fluoride intake has ever been scientifically documented.)
3) How much is too much?
As little as 0.04 mg/kg/day has been proven to cause adverse health effects. Retention of 2mg a day will produce crippling skeletal fluorosis in one's lifetime.
4) Does fluoride accumulate in the body?
Yes. Approximately half of each day's fluoride intake will be retained. This is what makes it so dangerous. "The dose makes the poison". All sides agree to the fact that healthy kidneys can eliminate only about 50% of daily fluoride intake. The rest gets absorbed in calcified tissues, like bones and teeth.The National Academy Of Sciences (NA stated in 1977 that, for the average individual, a retention of 2mg/day would result in crippling skeletal fluorosis after 40 years. Considering the above mentioned intake level, it is likely that skeletal fluorosis already affects a significant portion of the population.Children,the elderly and any person with impaired kidney function (which includes many AIDS patients), are in the high risk group for fluoride poisoning and must be warned to monitor their fluoride intake. Also at high risk are people with immunodeficiencies, diabetes and heart ailments, as well as anyone with calcium, magnesium and Vitamin C deficiencies.(At the level of 0.4 ppm renal (kidney) impairment has been shown.) (Junco, L.I. et al, "Renal Failure and Fluorosis", Fluorine & Dental Health, JAMA 222:783 - 785, 1972)
5) How does fluoride get into the water?
Most often as a byproduct from the fertilizer, aluminum and other industries, who manage to sell this toxic waste to municipalities nationwide.
6) What about my toothpaste?
Studies show that adults can absorb up to 0.5 mg per "TV ribbon" brushing. Small children, even if pea-size amount is used, will still absorb the same, more if the child is younger and has less swallowing control skills. Half a tube of toothpaste can kill a child. Current content of sodium fluoride in toothpaste in Canada and the US is up to 0.4% = 4000 ppm (parts per million). Bubblegum-flavored dentifrice obviously is especially inviting for children. Since April 1997 all toothpaste in the US must carry a warning label, advising parents what to do if their child swallows more than the pea-size brushing amount. Wholesale containers carry the poison symbol of skull and crossbones.
7) What about the fluoride treatment at the dental office?
Fluoride treatments can contain between 10,000 to 20,000 ppm. There is no regulated dose requirement. There are cases known of children dying in the dentist's chair.(New York Times, Jan. 20, 1979: "$750,000 Given in Child's Death in Fluoride Case" about a three year old child killed by fluoride treatment in the Dentist's office.)
8) How can my dentist say that it's good for my teeth?
By receiving limited training on the subject and being misinformed on purpose by the ADA and CDA. Figures in ADA pamphlets contain an incredible amount of untruths, and outright fraudulent claims. If you check the references cited and numbers listed in your local libraries, you will undoubtedly come to the same conclusion. Some fluoridation endorsements are listed which prove fraudulent when checked. Most dentists never bother to take the time to study both sides of the fluoride issue. Consider this statement by the ADA in 1979: "Individual dentists must be convinced that they need not be familiar with scientific reports and field investigations on fluoridation to be effective participants and that non-participation is overt neglect of personal responsibility." There are NO reliable studies, conducted under ethical research guidelines, which prove the benefits of fluoride supplementation. The FDA admits to this! There are more than 500 peer-reviewed studies documenting the adverse effects.Furthermore, dentists make higher profits in fluoridated areas and through fluoride use. As a result of mottled enamel, many more restorative measures are necessary, such as braces, bridges, etc. For the ADA/CDA, this condition is a real money-maker, because cosmetic dentistry is far more lucrative than cavity repair. In addition, there is an abundance of evidence in the scientific literature indicating that fluoride causes a delay in the normal shedding of the "baby" teeth, and their replacement by permanent teeth. This delay has been shown to increase the number of children with malpositioned teeth. Again, braces are far more expensive than fillings.(Note: In a 1972 report by the American Dental Association, it is stated that dentists make 17% more profit in fluoridated areas as opposed to non-fluoridated areas.)(Douglas et al., "Impact of water fluoridation on dental practices and dental manpower", Journal of the American Dental Association;84:355-67, 1972)
In 1993 the National Academy of Sciences warned, "dental fluorosis...might be more than a cosmetic defect if enough fluorotic enamel is fractured and lost to cause pain, adversely affect food choices, compromise chewing efficiency, and require complex dental treatment."
The International Academy of Oral Medicine and Toxicology has classified fluoride as an unapproved dental medicament due to its high toxicity.
The FDA considers fluoride an unapproved new drug for which there is no proof of safety or effectiveness. The FDA does not consider fluoride an essential nutrient.
Four major studies involving 480,000 children (US, 39,000; Japan, 22,000; India, 400,000; Tucson, 29,000) comparing fluoridated and non-fluoridated areas showed no significant difference in decay rates. Proven is that a higher intake of fluoride will actually cause MORE cavities, especially for children with low dietary calcium intake.
9) Is it true that fluoride can cause cancer?
Yes. In 1990 fluoride was found to be an equivocal carcinogen by the National Cancer Institute Toxicology Program.(Maurer, et. al.,"Fluoride an equivocal carcinogen. J.National Cancer Institute 82, 1118-26, 1990)
In 1992 further studies by the New Jersey Department of Health confirmed a 6.9 fold increase in bone cancer in young males.(Cohn, Perry D. Ph.D. "An Epidemiological Report on Drinking Water" Fluoridation and Osteosarcoma in Young Males, New Jersey Department of Health, Environmental Health Service, Trenton NJ November 8, 1992)
In 1997 there were more than 80 references available, linking fluoride to cancer.
10) Is it true that fluoride can increase hip fractures?
Yes. According to Dr. J. William Hirzy (vice-president of the NFFE LOCAL 2050, the union representing all scientists at the EPA, Washington, D.C.) there have been 5 epidemiological studies done since 1990, in three different countries, all showing a higher increase in hip fractures in fluoridated communities.
Some studies have indicated a 87% higher risk of hip fractures to the elderly in areas where water fluoridation was even below 1.5 ppm.
11) Is this also true for Osteoporosis and Arthritis?
Yes, most definitely. There are also studies proving that fluoride toxicity affects fertility.
12) Does it cause brain damage?
Yes. Fluorides lower the intelligence capacity of humans, with children, again, especially susceptible to early fluoride toxicity. IQ levels were significantly lower than children not exposed to fluorides in all age groups listed. (According to Dr. Hirzy, 5 to 19 points lower!)(Li,X.S.,Zhi,J.L.,Gao,R.O.,"Effects of Fluoride Exposure on the Intelligence of Children", Fluoride;28:182-189, 1995)
Further studies proving the neurotoxicity of fluoride in rats have also been conducted by Dr. Phyllis Mullinex and her co-workers.(Note: this also explains a recent University of South Florida study relating fluoride intake during pregnancy to the yearly 1% increase in learning disabilities found in children...)Studies proving that fluorides transfer through the placenta are well known.(Meanwhile, Dr.Weil, Internet's Health Guru, advocates fluoride supplements for pregnant woman in his book "8 Weeks To Optimum Health"...)
There are also several studies linking aluminum with fluoride, showing that the bioavailability of aluminum is increased in the presence of fluorides, causing aluminum in the brain to double in treated animals. According to an October 28, 1992 Wall Street Journal Article about a study conducted by Varnier JA, et al.: "Rats fed the highest doses developed irregular mincing steps characteristic of senile animals.... Post mortem examination of the rat brains disclosed 'substantial cell loss in structures associated with dementia -- the neo-cortex and hippocampus'."(Note: Alzheimer's Desease, first diagnosed by Dr. Alois Alzheimer in 1907, is now the #4 killer for every person over 60 in the US. Every 2nd person over 70 will develop Alzheimer's.)
13) How wide-spread is this problem?
The US Public Health Service estimates that 1 in 5 children have dental fluorosis. (By the way, all native reservations in the US have mandatory fluoridation, resulting in very high incidents of dental fluorosis in those areas.) Realistic figures are as high as 80% in some areas in the US and as high as 69% in Canada. Studies have been conducted directly linking bone tissue damage to children with dental fluorosis. Fluorosis is the first visible sign that destructive effects of fluoride are also occurring in bone, connective tissue, immune and enzyme functions.
14) If all this is true, how can all this be possible, sanctioned by government?
In 1939 a dentist named H. Trendley Dean, DDS, examined water from 345 communities in Texas. Dr. Dean worked for the U.S Public Health Service (PH. He determined that high concentrations of fluoride in the water corresponded to a high incidence in mottled teeth. To many dentists this provided an answer to the problem of mottled teeth they saw in some of their patients. Dr. Dean also unexpectedly found a lower incidence of dental cavities in communities having about 1 ppm fluoride in the water supply. Among the native residents of these areas about ten percent developed the very mildest forms of mottled enamel, usually described as "beautiful white teeth". However, Dean used a technique known as "selective use of data", using data from 21 cities while completely disregarding data from 272 other locations which show an almost complete lack of correlation when plotted.(J.Colquhoun;International Symposium on Fluoridation, Porte Alegre, Brazil, September 1988)
Meanwhile, a number of court cases were being launched due to fluoride contamination, mainly by the aluminum industry. In addition the Manhattan Project, the secret atomic bomb project, was in a big race to build the world's first A-bomb. A pollution incident of great magnitude occurred at a factory in New Jersey (DuPont) producing millions of tons of fluoride for the project. A major "negative PR" problem was emerging, threatening the Manhattan Project and the secrecy around it.In 1945, supposedly as a result of Dr. Dean's discovery, the PHS planned to conduct a 10-year study of fluoridation in two cities. Grand Rapids, Michigan was chosen as the city for artificial fluoridation and Muskegon, Michigan was the non-fluoridated city for comparison and cavity rates were to be compared. In 1950, after only five years into the project, due again to pressure exerted from the atomic bomb program, public health officials started to campaign for fluoridation. The campaign was based on the fact that fluoridated Grand Rapids had shown some decrease in cavity rate. Meanwhile there was also a decrease in cavity rate shown in non-fluoridated Muskegon. However, Muskegon was dropped from the study for unknown reasons. After the project was completed, only the Grand Rapids result was released and a major PR campaign promoting fluoride use started.
15) How about the effects on the environment?
Many studies have been conducted examining the adverse effects of fluoride on the eco-system. In 1995, the CEPA identified the now closed Brunswick Mining and Smelting Fertilizer Plant in Belledune, NB as having the largest discharge of fluoride to the aquatic environment in Canada. Toxicity to marine bacteria and impaired reproduction effects were demonstrated... Agriculture Canada (1976) found that 25 out of 36 cattle located on several Cornwall Island farms in the Saint Regis Quebec region displayed real or potential symptoms of chronic fluorosis. A subsequent study of livestock in this region reported stiffness and inflamed leg joints, dental fluorosis, osteosclerosis, osteonecrosis and bone deformations.Many serious toxic and detrimental effects to plants and animal species have been documented, salmon populations in particluar being in the high risk category.
IT'S A TOXIC WASTE! Think about it - day after day, millions of tons of fluoride are "legally" released into the environment, especially in fluoridated areas. Showers, toilet flushes, lawn sprinkling...As a result of the original Manhattan Project logic, industries, now mainly the fertilzer and aluminum industries, have a perfect way to release their hazardous and toxic waste. It would cost up to $US 8,000 per truckload to dispose of this hazardous waste. At a rate of emissions into the air of 155,000 tons/year, in addition to an estimated 500,000 tons of emissions into lakes, ocean, rivers (not counting fluoridation) - this adds up to savings of US 6 Billion dollars/year to the industry! (US figures)
16) What do I need to do? How can I protect myself?
If you live in an area with fluoridated water, drink distilled water. You can have it delivered or buy it at Supermarkets. You can also buy distilling or reverse osmosis systems for home use which is the only way for taking fluoride out of the water. Also, eliminate any Teflon of Tefal coated cookingware, for scratches in the surface will release PTFT, another toxic fluoride compound. Avoid fruit juices coming from fluoridated areas. All non-organic grape products are especially high in fluoride content due to the number of fertilizer and pesticide applications. Wine can contain up to 3 ppm fluoride. Avoid using any toothpaste or mouthrinse containing fluoride. There are many alternatives on the market. A recent store survey in Vancouver showed over 20 different brands.
In addition, lobbying is required to demand fluoride content labeling on commercial products. Steps to educate the public about this proven health risk and fluoride's toxic properties must be taken immediately and health advisories issued. Water fluoridation should cease immediately and steps should be taken to reduce fluoride in food, drink, and dental products.
If you live in a fluoridated area, take action to stop the addition of fluoride into the water supply. Individuals ARE successful in educating legislators about the issue and have helped pass laws to stop the addition of fluoride into the water supply. (Notably Darlene Sherrell, who not only discovered that the original Roholm/Hodge safety figures had been mis-calculated and then persisted with the help of Dr. Bob Carton and Senator Bob Graham in her efforts to get the National Research Council (NAS/NRC) to adopt the new figures - which had even been corrected by Hodge himself in 1979 - but also managed to change the law in Michigan, giving people the right to vote on fluoridation. Michigan was the first state in the US to repeal their mandatory fluoridation law. Written by: Andreas Schuld firstname.lastname@example.org (604) 435-9859
The Codex Alimentarius is a threat to the freedom of people to choose natural healing and alternative medicine and nutrition. Ratified by the World Health Organization, and going into Law in the United States in 2009, the threat to health freedom has never been greater. This is the first part of a series of talks by Dr. Rima Laibow MD, available on DVD from the Natural Solutions Foundation, an non-profit organization dedicated to educating people about how to stop Codex Alimentarius from taking away our right to freely choose nutritional health
Nutricide - Criminalizing Natural Health, Vitamins, and Herbs
Prescription for Disaster is an in-depth investigation into the symbiotic relationships between the pharmaceutical industry, the FDA, lobbyists, lawmakers, medical schools, and researchers, and the impact this has on consumers and their health care. During this thorough investigation, we take a close look at patented drugs, why they are so readily prescribed by doctors, the role insurance companies and HMO's play in promoting compliance, and the problem of rising health care costs. We examine the marketing and public relations efforts on behalf of the pharmaceutical companies, including sales reps, medical journals and conferences. Further, we look at alternatives to traditional pharmacology and drug therapy, such as vitamins and nutritional supplements, and why they are often perceived as a competitive threat to the drug manufacturers. Alternative therapies also include diet, exercise and a healthy lifestyle.
Prescription for Disaster takes you on a journey through the tangled web of big business, the way disease is treated today, and the consequences we suffer as a society.
Excellent documentary showing how dangerous artificial sweetner Aspartame is. From its history, to its effects this video is enough to shock anyone into really looking at there food labels next time they shop. Aspartame is a toxic food that came into the world as an investment By Donald Rumsfeld, while ignoring the deadly effects the tests showed. Take a good look at this video, it could save lives.
In this video, Christopher Bryson, an award-winning journalist and former producer at the BBC, discusses the findings of his new book The Flouride Deception.
EARLY REVIEWS of The Fluoride Deception:
"Bryson marshals an impressive amount of research to demonstrate fluoride?s harmfulness, the ties between leading fluoride researchers and the corporations who funded and benefited from their research, and what he says is the duplicity with which fluoridation was sold to the people. The result is a compelling challenge to the reigning dental orthodoxy, which should provoke renewed scientific scrutiny and public debate."
-- PUBLISHERS WEEKLY
The Fluoride Deception (Interview With Christopher Bryson)
Dr Malcolm Kendrick speaks about World Health Organisation data gathered in their MONI-CA study. MONItoring Trends in CArdiovascular Disease.
From the EU Monica WHO data I took all data on fat intake and CHD rate from virtually all European countries for1998-1999 The data was then regressed using Quattro Pro. The regression line was drawn using the results. Both analyses show that doubling the national fat intake reduces the national Coronary Heart Disease rate by half! Total Fat (%of diet) Multiple R 0.667; Regression "p" = 5.43 E-07 Saturated Fat Intake (%of diet) Multiple R = 0.584; Regression = "p" < 0.00001
Elevated Cholesterol does not actually cause heart disease; excess levels of cholesterol in the blood can complicate an existing cardiovascular condition. For this reason millions take statin drugs and risk the potential side effects to their liver. Alternatives to statins have come along way and now Natural Alternatives are as good or better that the leading statin drugs. Guggulipids, Pantethine, phytosterols, and many fibers in the right combination have proven to be as effective as dangerous statin drugs. Clinical Studies have proven that the right combination of Guggulipids, Pantethine, phytosterols, and many fibers can normalize elevated cholesterol levels in as little as 90 days. Ratios of HDL and LDL can be improved by making simple changes to your diet. Ideally, cholesterol levels within reason are not as important as proper HDL to LDL ratios. Elevated cholesterol can be reduced significantly, up to 20 points or more, in about 90 days. Low fat diets and cholesterol have very little to do with each other. The body makes up to 80 percent of all the cholesterol in your body while the rest comes from dietary intake. Since cholesterol in the diet makes up such a small amount of the total cholesterol in the body, low cholesterol diets are often ineffective in controlling the elevation. Elevated cholesterol is a liver problem and must be approached by detoxifying the liver and nourishing it with key nutrients such as Guggulipids, Pantethine, phytosterols, fiber. Lecithin is another agent that is very helpful for liver function and as such can help to regulate cholesterol in the bloodstream The formula we have developed here at The Institute of Nutritional Science not only helps to lower cholesterol safely without the dangers of statins, but we can also improve the HDL and LDL ratios at the same time.
Six McDonalds-munching Americans eat 100% vegan live foods for a month. Medical results are fantastic. Doctors and experts are interviewed including Gabriel Cousens, MD and David Wolfe. Raw for 30-Days
Raw for 30-Days will document the journey of five Americans suffering from Adult Onset Type II Diabetes, who undergo a radical 30-day diet and lifestyle change in the hope of reversing or reducing their insulin dependence. The film will show the eating habits that led to the development of this disease and will posit an alternative approach to living and eating, one in which foods can heal and hold the potential to reverse Diabetes. We will recruit subjects who have been subsisting on a standard American junk food diet and who are now insulin dependent and Diabetic. Those selected will journey to the Tree of Life Rejuvenation Center in Arizona to undergo a 30-day health regimen consisting of 100% raw organic living foods that are purported to heal Diabetes. We will select a diverse group of subjects, representative of the different segments of the population most affected by this epidemic. Examples include a Native American from a Reservation, an African American from an urban Northeast city, a Mexican American living in the western US and a Caucasian person from the mid-west or a Southern city such as Chattanooga, TN
Neal Barnard MD discusses the science behind food additions. Willpower is not to blame: chocolate, cheese, meat, and sugar release opiate-like substances. Dr. Barnard also discusses how industry, aided by government, exploits these natural cravings, pushing us to eat more and more unhealthy foods. A plant-based (vegan) diet is the solution to avoid many of these problems. Neal Barnard is the founder of the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine (PCRM)
Chocolate, Cheese, Meat, and Sugar -- Physically Addictive Foods
In excruciating detail, an Arizona mother on Monday described severe autism and devastating health problems that plague her 12-year-old daughter and asked a court to find common childhood vaccines were the cause.
The test case is being closely watched by nearly 5,000 families of autistic children who have lodged similar claims for compensation from a federal fund.
The case of Michelle Cedillo, of Yuma, Ariz., is the first alleging a vaccine-autism link to be heard in the U.S. Court of Federal Claims. It and eight other test cases are important because they will guide the handling of the other pending claims. Most contend that a mercury-rich preservative called thimerosal is to blame for the impaired social interaction typical of the disorder.
Should they prevail, the families will be eligible for compensation from a federal vaccine injury fund established by Congress to ensure an adequate supply of vaccines by shielding manufacturers from lawsuits. No autism claim has been paid from the fund thus far.
Large scientific studies have found no association between autism and vaccines containing thimerosal.
Government attorney Vincent Matanoski dismissed much of what the plaintiffs are expected to present during the three-week hearing as conjecture or speculation.
"You'll find their hypotheses untested or, when tested, have been found false," Matanoski said.
Theresa Cedillo said her daughter suffered five days of fever, her temperature often spiking to 105 degrees, after receiving a measles, mumps and rubella vaccination at age 15 months. Michelle was a happy, robust, responsive and loving child — in short, normal — but hasn't been the same since, her mother told the court.
Wearing noise-canceling headphones, Michelle was brought into the courtroom in a wheelchair at the start of the proceedings. She stayed only a short time, moaning audibly several times. Besides autism, Michelle suffers from inflammatory bowel disease, glaucoma and epilepsy. In addition, her bones, weakened by years of malnourishment, are prone to breaks, Theresa Cedillo said. Everything she eats is pumped in through a feeding tube, except for crackers and water.
"Clearly the story of Michelle's life is a tragic one," Special Master George Hastings Jr. said in thanking the family for allowing theirs to be the first test case. Hastings pledged he and two other special masters would listen carefully to all evidence.
Theresa Cedillo and husband Michael allege thimerosal-containing vaccines weakened their daughter's immune system and prevented her body from clearing the measles virus after she was immunized. That theory is one of three alleged by the thousands of plaintiffs. The others claim either thimerosal or the measles vaccine alone caused their children's autism.
"We hope to find out what happened and hopefully get the help she needs," said Theresa Cedillo, who takes care of her daughter full time at home.
The burden of proof is easier than in a traditional court. Plaintiffs only have to prove that a link between autism and the shots is more likely than not, based on a preponderance of evidence. But many parents say their children's symptoms did not show up until after their children received the vaccines, required by many states for admission to school.
"These are families who followed the rules. These are families who brought children in for vaccines. These are families who immunized their children," Cedillo attorney Thomas Powers said. Later, outside court, he cast aside any suggestion his clients were anti-vaccine.
Autism is characterized by impaired social interaction. Those affected often have trouble communicating, and they exhibit unusual or severely limited activities and interests.
In 1999, the U.S. government asked vaccine manufacturers to eliminate or reduce the use of thimerosal in childhood vaccines to limit infant exposure to mercury. Today, the preservative is no longer found in routine childhood vaccines but is used in some flu shots.
The nine test cases will be heard consecutively over the next year. A ruling in the Cedillo case could take months or longer, attorneys said.
On the Net:
U.S. Court of Federal Claims: http://www.uscfc.uscourts.gov
AN Essex girl may be the first lady with a tongue stud to have set her sights on the White House. The wife of Dennis Kucinich, a left-wing Democratic congressman and 2008 presidential candidate, is a 29-year-old hippie chick from Upminster at the end of London Underground’s District line.
Elizabeth Kucinich, née Harper, has been on the stump with her husband, a 60-year-old anti-war campaigner from Cleveland, Ohio, mingling with the likes of Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama backstage at the Democratic presidential debates. “There’s a kind of camaraderie,” she said.
A 6ft tall willowy redhead who has been compared to Arwen Evenstar, the Lord of the Rings character, she towers over her diminutive husband. “Who cares?” she said in an interview. “I like wearing high heels so I’m used to being taller than most men I stand next to.”
Nor is she bothered by their 31-year age difference. “I have never noticed it at all,” she said. “Dennis is a very mature but young-at-heart gentleman and we complement each other.”
Kucinich met her husband-to-be two years ago when she visited his office in the House of Representatives with her boss
as a volunteer worker for the American Monetary Institute, an offbeat group dedicated to reforming the “unjust monetary system”.
It was love at first sight for both of them. Immediately after their meeting, Dennis Kucinich phoned a friend and said: “I’ve met her [my future wife].”
He was mesmerised to receive a business e-mail from Harper with her usual signature line from Kama Sutra, one of her favourite films: “Knowing love, I shall allow all things to come and go, to be as supple as the wind and take everything that comes with great courage. My heart is as open as the sky.”
He proposed at their second meeting in Albuquerque, New Mexico, and they married three months later. The Hollywood actress Shirley MacLaine attended their wedding.
“I knew at once I really wanted to marry this man,” Elizabeth said. “When you know it, why hang around?” It was Dennis’s third marriage, but by the time he met Elizabeth he had been single for more than 20 years.
If Dennis were elected, they would make a great team, Elizabeth said. “Can you imagine what it would be like to have real love in the White House and a true union between the masculine and the feminine?”
There were clues in her childhood that they were destined for each other, Elizabeth believes. She lived with her mother, a divorcée, on the outskirts of London in a farm labourer’s dilapidated house that was lovingly restored over the years. “The address was 4, Dennis’s Cottages, Dennis’s Lane,” she said.
Her mother runs a healing and therapy centre and passed on her love of new age philosophy to her daughter. Known at school in Essex as “the Jolly Green Giant” because of her height, she studied religion and theology at Kent University and spent time in India and Tanzania, where she worked for Voluntary Service Overseas.
It was in India that she encountered somebody with a tongue stud and later had her own implanted — a bar with two delicate balls on either side.
On her MySpace website she lists one of her favourite bands as Coldplay and says her heroes are “my beautiful husband and anyone else who embraces peace”. She describes Dennis as a “very philosophical, deep thinking person” rather than a new age type, but he is a vegan, unlike her — she still cannot resist occasional dairy products.
At Kent she unexpectedly signed up for a master’s degree in conflict resolution after meeting the course lecturer in a pub. She knew she had chosen the right subject when her final exam took place on September 11, 2001.
“The rest of the world was sending out its love to America but US officials just wanted to kick out. I remember thinking then I’d love to come to America and help them to reconcile with the rest of the world,” she said.
A shy girl in class, she has now learnt to speak in front of thousands of peaceniks and activists on behalf of her husband and his presidential campaign. Dennis was slated for his anti-war views when he first ran for president in 2004 but now “represents the voice of the majority”, she said. “Americans have come to understand he was right all along.”
As the wife of a congressman, she mixes with politicians across the political divide. Earlier this month she attended a reception for the Queen at the British embassy with Dennis, and was thrilled to meet her. “I have great respect for the royal family because of their dedication to public service,” she said.
Another of her heroines is Diana, Princess of Wales. When she died, Elizabeth’s mother rang her daughter in tears. “I was in shock for a very long time,” Elizabeth said. “She held an incredible position in my heart. I was devastated. There hasn’t been anyone able to bring that compassion back into public life.”
If Dennis makes it to the White House — admittedly an unlikely prospect — Diana will be the first lady’s role model. Americans, who always loved the princess, would like that, but they might tell Elizabeth to lose the tongue stud.
Brendan Brazier knows a thing or two about eating for performance. The lean, 27-year-old from North Vancouver is a professional Ironman triathlete and champion of the Canadian 50-kilometre Ultra Marathon in 2003 and 2006.
The vegan (no meat, fish or animal products including dairy and eggs) says his success has everything to do with plant-based foods that are, in his words, "high-quality, nutrient-dense, alkaline-forming and easily digestible, in proper proportions."
After 17 years of experimenting, Brazier has come up with what he calls the Thrive Diet. The basic premise is that our body's inability to cope with stress -- caused not only by rigorous physical training but also by the pressures of modern life -- is the root of many ailments.
When we're under stress, our adrenal glands secrete the hormone cortisol into the bloodstream. Continual stress leads to elevated cortisol levels and adrenal burnout, which in turn lead to exhaustion, hormone imbalance, a weakened immune system, weight gain and a host of other problems.
"What I realized was that when I was eating refined pastas and breads and peanut butter and lots of things that are really processed and hard to digest, that that was creating a stress response within the body which raised cortisol levels and stress hormones and that made recovery [after training] a lot slower," he says.
Brendan believes we can combat that harmful stress with the foods of his diet, which include an abundance of fresh fruits and vegetables -- mostly raw -- legumes, seeds (pumpkin, sesame and sunflower), and "pseudograins" such as amaranth, buckwheat, quinoa and wild rice (these are higher in protein, fibre and trace minerals than conventional grains).
His diet also includes healthy fats, with hemp oil topping the list because of its ideal ratio of omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids and protein containing all 10 essential amino acids.
Pumpkin, flaxseed, extra-virgin olive and coconut oils are also good, coconut oil being the only fat Brendan uses for frying because it can be heated to a high temperature without converting to a trans fat.
Contrary to what you might think, Brendan says, coconut oil is good for us, rich in medium-chain triglycerides, a healthy form of saturated fat.
He's also turned his diet into a book, The Thrive Diet (Penguin Canada), complete with recipes and a 12-week meal plan.
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Brazier's all-natural energy bar should be eaten before a run. Use the protein-and-mineral rich Blueberry Rooibos Antioxidant Smoothie to reward yourself an hour or so after crossing the finish line. Ingredients for these recipes are available at natural food stores.
- Blueberry Rooibos Antioxidant Smoothie
500 mL cold water or 375 mL water plus 250 mL ice
125 mL blueberries
15 mL ground flaxseed
15 mL hemp protein
15 mL agave nectar
15 mL hemp oil
10 mL ground rooibos tea leaves
Mix all ingredients together in a blender. Smoothie is best fresh, but can be kept refrigerated for up to 3 days. Makes about 875 mL or 2 large servings.
- Apple Cinnamon Energy Bars
1 small apple, cored
250 mL fresh or soaked dried dates
125 mL soaked or cooked quinoa
50 mL almonds
50 mL ground flaxseed
50 mL hemp flour
10 mL cinnamon
2 mL nutmeg
Sea salt to taste
Grind almonds in a food processor. Add remaining ingredients and process until desired texture is reached. If you prefer a uniformly smooth bar, process longer. For more crunch and texture, blend for less time. Remove mixture from processor on to a clean surface.
Roll the mixture into balls or shape it into bars. To shape into balls, use a tablespoon (15 mL) or your hands to scoop the mixture and roll between the palms of your hands. To shape as bars, flatten the mixture on the clean surface with your hands. Place plastic wrap over top; with a rolling pin, roll mixture to desired bar thickness. Cut into bars. Alternatively, form the mixture into a brick; cut as though slicing bread. As the bars dry, they become easier to handle.
This is the time of year when student groups and educators are planning their budgets for the fall semester. It’s a great time to request funding for a presentation on Food Not Bombs. Please consider inviting artist, author, former political prisoner and Food Not Bombs cofounder Keith McHenry to speak to your community. Keith helped start the Food Not Bombs movement in 1980 when he was a student at Boston University. His presentation is informative and inspiring. He has traveled all over the world collecting, cooking and sharing free meals with the hungry. He has also worked for peace, justice and the environment with activist from around the globe. He provides a world-view that is hopeful and empowering. Audiences find his presentation motivating.
Keith wrote the book “Food Not Bombs, How to Feed the Hungry and Build Community” published in six languages. He spent over 500 nights in jail for his human rights work, was tortured and declared a Prisoner of Conscience by Amnesty International. Two of the movements he helped start; Food Not Bombs and Indymedia are listed on the FBI's terrorist watch list. This past two years he has visited Food Not Bombs chapters and worked with activists in Africa, Europe, the Middle East, and North America.
He is an experienced, engaging and inspiring public speaker with a wealth of knowledge about community organizing, nonviolence, movement building, peace and social justice issues, consensus decision-making, poverty and hunger, disaster relief and world events. His work is featured in many books, and periodicals and has spoken at many universities and conferences. He has spoken on several tours including the "Rent is Theft Tour", the "UnFree Trade Tour" that inspired the 1999 protests against the WTO in Seattle and “The Drop Bush Not Bombs” tour of Europe and the Middle East. Keith has participated in protests for peace and economic justice all over the world, planting olive tress on the West Bank, feeding blockaders at Shannon Airbase in Ireland and sharing vegetarian meals at the Food Not NATO actions in Turkey. He joined Zagreb Food Not Bombs at their Anti-McDonalds action and helped feed the protesters in Cancun at the demonstration against the WTO. He organized the kitchen and food recover for Camp Casey in Crawford, Texas and he coordinated Food Not Bombs Katrina relief effort across the Gulf region. He would be excited about sharing his experience with your community. This year he spoke many places including at the 2006 Bioneers Conference, at the University of Calabar Nigeria, Oberlin College, the University of Northern Arizona and the World College. This spring he will be speaking at a number of other locations including the University of Vermont, the Sustainable Peace Fair and the Anarchist Book Fair in San Francisco.
Consider inviting Keith to speak to your students, at commencement ceremonies or to your community group. He can also provide video and literature at the presentation. His fees are reasonable. The honorarium supports Food Not Bombs. Consider requesting funds from your student activity fees or department budget and schedule a Food Not Bombs presentation next semester. Please call Keith at 1-800-884-1136 to make arrangements. Call soon because he is already filling his calendar with Food Not Bombs presentations.
You can print out a full color brochure and sample flyer at: http://www.foodnotbombs.net/speaker.html
Food Not Bombs P.O. Box 424, Arroyo Seco, NM 87514 USA 505-776-3880 1-800-884-1136 email@example.com
PLEASE FORWARD THIS EMAIL TO AS MANY INTERESTED PEOPLE AS POSSIBLE, THANKS
Incredibly enough, while everyone else is saying that we should end the war in Iraq and talk with Iran and Syria, President Bush is now sending more troops to Iraq, and clearly preparing, in words as well as actions, to launch a military strike against Iran. (Or let Israel do it for him.)
A wider war in the Middle East would be a catastophe unlike any we've seen before, and could very possibly usher in a third World War. I signed the "No War with Iran!" petition, which is being organized by the group Peace Action, and would recommend it to you as well. You can sign the petition by cutting and pasting the following url into your internet browser: http://democracyinaction.org/dia/organizationsORG/Peaceact/petition.jsp?petition_KEY=358
Thanks for joining me in signing the "No War with Iran" petition!
In 1978, New Hope Housing turned an old farmhouse off Route 1 into a homeless shelter. Mondloch House was the first shelter in Fairfax County. Now, New Hope is Northern Virginia’s largest provider of shelter beds, and for the last two years, Mondloch has again been pushing the limits of how shelter is being provided to the region’s homeless. “It was designed to see what happened if you just threw out all the rules of how a typical shelter runs,” explained New Hope’s Director Pam Michell. Mondloch specializes in housing people who “insist on living in the woods,” the chronically homeless. Unlike in larger shelters, there is no bedtime and no sign-out sheets. The only rules are no violence and no drugs. The shelter can house seven people at a time, and its four full-time staff members try to create a family atmosphere. “Our number one goal is to build a relationship with the resident, to build trust and rapport and then to engage them in services. We don’t mandate services,” said Laura Martin, the shelter’s coordinator. “Other shelters basically have a lot of rules. They require residents to meet with mental health staff, share documentation of savings and employment, to be sober, to meet with medical doctors and address their medical issues. Other shelters also don’t let residents spend nights out.” “Our end goal is still to address residents’ medical concerns, mental health concerns, whatever they may have, but our approach is different.” The approach seems to be working. Of the 21 homeless people Mondloch has served, seven are currently living there, seven have moved into supportive housing, one moved to assisted living and one moved to a shared, subsidized unit. Fairfax’s Department of Family Services provides most of Mondloch’s funding. Martin said it is a bargain for the county. “We’re reducing the cost to society in terms of hospitalizations both psychiatric and medical, as well as arrests and incarcerations, all the expenses related to that.” She said that the bulk of resources devoted to the homeless population goes to the 20 percent who are chronically homeless. Focusing on getting that 20 percent in shelter frees resources for people who need less help getting out of homelessness. In December, Governor Timothy Kained awarded New Hope staff the 2006 Virginia Housing Award for Best Housing Program.
“I HAVE SEEN EVERY SINGLE SUBWAY EXIT,” said Hiruye Afework, an immigrant from Eritrea who has been at Mondloch since it opened. He explained that when he was homeless he would band together with seven or eight colleagues and spend the day in the relative cleanliness and safety of Metro stations. He stayed with groups because it minimized the “biggest problem” for the homeless: crime. “They take your blanket, steal things and sometimes beat you up. And crime is very scary, so you have a hard time sleeping.” Afework said his time in other shelters has given him perspective to appreciate Mondloch’s storage space, private rooms, thrice-daily meals, laundry facilities, showers and in-house medication “It gives you some hope, you know,” he said of the amenities. “We take trips also, to make it more interesting. It’s like a vacation. That’s what it takes to really help survive.” Afework believes he is making progress. He is treating his depression with medication that he says helps him concentrate. He hopes to go back to work. “In some shelters people come back the same way they entered. They haven’t changed anything.” In those larger, more structured shelters, “they always lack something out of the whole picture. This is the only place I have seen that has the entire picture covered.”
“OUR RESIDENTS ARE ONE OF A KIND. They are very intelligent,” said Jerry Allsbrook, who has been a residential counselor at Mondloch since it opened. “You accept them as they are and just work with them. It helps to be able to recognize their positives, help bring out the positives in them.” Louis Kelly’s room is a spic and span series of geometric angles, everything neatly tucked away. Before he came to Mondloch he had been living in a garage and going to the outpatient shelter at Inova Mount Vernon Hospital’s Mental Health Unit. Kelly converted his living space into an office by flipping his bed sideways and laying a shelf atop the legs to form a stand-up desk. He stores his inflatable mattress and blankets in the space behind it. Classical music plays softly on his small radio. He uses the office to peruse catalogues and clip out things that interest him. “I’m down with calendars, magazines, books, I’m always rehabilitating myself.” Asked about his neatness, Kelly replied, “Oh yeah, that’s my Mom, she was strict.” He is 40, but with a bandanna covering his bald head could pass for someone in his early 20s. In season, Kelly workers at local farmers’ market, where he gets much of the produce he exclusively eats. Mondloch accommodates his vegan, raw food diet. “It’s beautiful,” he said. “The staff is real cool.”
“IF YOU FIND A DRY STICK, water it every day until bears fruit,” said Martin, quoting the Monastic Desert Fathers. “That’s really the concept we adopt here. That day in and day out engagement.” She said her time at Mondloch has taught her “to allow people room and space to self-determine, to celebrate someone brushing his teeth or taking a shower, [that] change can be incremental and yet profound at the same time, and that a strong and vibrant community can be created here at Mondloch. We had a resident who is 100 years old who celebrated her one hundredth birthday here.”
(RG): I understand that you are a Fruitarian. I've never heard of that before. Can you explain to me what it is?
(R: Sure, no problem. A Fruitarian is a person whose diet consists exclusively of seeded fresh fruits of all kinds. There's no secrets, rules or special methods to living a Fruitarian lifestyle, as complicated as the guru's would like to make out. It's as simple as picking up a fruit and eating it. The hard part is dealing with what we call the detoxification period. This is the time where cooked food is eliminated from the diet and the body begins to cleanse itself.
It's the bodies natural instinct to always cleanse itself so when you go strict Fruitarian you will eventually get rid of the bodies bulky waste and debris from cooked food and kick start your bodies natural cleansing process and given the right conditions, it will start to clean out all the waste and debris left in the bodies organs from the cooked foods you ate in the past at a deeper level and this is what makes the detoxification period so hard because after eliminating cooked foods from your diet, you will then crave cooked foods in the same way as a drug addict or alcoholic will crave drugs or alcohol, as well as suffer from detoxification symptoms.
The length of time it takes for people to get over their detoxification period varies from person to person. It can last weeks to years but, only once the body has cleansed itself fully, can we truly feel and experience all of what Fruitarianism has to offer. Unfortunatly very few people ever get to that point due to fear, uncertainty and severe detoxification symptoms, which many mistake for illness.
My advice to anyone considering Fruitarianism is to ease into it over a period of years. First, master being a Raw Vegan, eating heavier foods then master being a strict 100% Raw Vegan then see if your ready for Fruitarianism.
Fruitarianism ain't nothing to jump into unprepared, so unless your super hardcore and can handle some severe detoxification symptoms, I'd ease into it!
(RG): I love the way you went into depth with that. You explained it very well. So, you just eat nothing but fruits? How do you keep and maintain your sugar and protien level eating nothing but fruits?
(R: Yes, I eat nothing but fruits...no veggies, greens, nuts, seeds, supplements and I don't drink any water. I get all my fluids from fruits. When I first went fruitarian, I was drawn to a wide variety of fruits, it felt so liberating to be eating fruits of all kinds without the after effects I got from cooked food.
I was perfectly happy just eating fruits, but the more I researched into fruitarianism, the more I came across conflicting and negative information. All of it going against my own instincts. I got so confused that I decided that my own instincts must be wrong and reluctantly introduced water, nuts, seeds and green juices/supplements into my lifestyle but, I stopped those shortly afterwards because it just didn't feel right with my body and spirit.
I've stayed on just fruits ever since. On fruits, I feel fantastic and actually motivated to get out and be active and as far as such things as B12, protein, calories, etc., I just ignore all of that. I wasn't worried about them when I was on cooked food so why worry now.
Fruits are full of natural fruit sugar called fructose and each individual fruit contains just the right amount of protein. Having said that, I don't pay too much attention to nutritional content of the fruits I eat. Instead, I listen to my body and how it feels. Also, I don't bother with protein, calories, nutrition, RDA's etc. anymore. My experiences just didn't match up to what modern nutrition teaches, so I threw all the modern nutritional info I thought I knew out of the window a long time ago and started learning for myself, from scratch, how my body reacts to different fruits, through learning the way to live the Fruitarian lifestyle for myself and not being dependant on others. I have complete faith in knowing that if I'm lacking in any nutrients, it will be made up for at a later date, so I have no concerns or worries regarding the nutritional aspect of my diet.
(RG): How long have you been a fruitarian?
(R: 12 long, weird and wonderful years and I'm enjoying great health now. Due to my severe detoxification symptoms, dramatic weight loss and many failed attempts at trying to get off cooked foods, my detoxification period was a nightmare experience, which was made worse by the fact that I was doing it all unsupported and with no guidance. For that reason, I quit fruitarianism more times than I can remember, but in my heart I always knew that if I could just weather the storm, I'd be ok. At that time, there were no Fruitarian mentors willing to inspire or show the way forward. I received no support from the raw food forums either. Being a Fruitarian at that time was not good because you were seen as an extremist so I was just ridiculed, verbally attacked and told that I couldn't possibly last any more than 2-3 months on an all fruit diet. So, in the end, I just got sick and tired of seeking support and trying to find like minded people and I soon realised that if I wanted to do this Fruitarian thing, I would have to go it alone.
(RG): What made you decide you wanted to become a fruitarian in the first place?
(R: My health was getting worse as I got older and by the time I was in my early twenties, I could see the same pattern occuring in others too in exactly the same way. So, I knew that at some level, something was going wrong with our societies eating habits.
I came from south east London, England. My family weren't exactly rich so, cheap junk food and cheap meat was a way of life. I was brought up a meat/junk food eater until my mid twenties.
Up until then, I had lived to eat and didn't know any different. In fact, food was a great comfort to me and it was how I used it to deal with the stresses in my life! I ate anything and everything I could, no matter what the ingredients. The only thing I didn't like was seafood and, as I said before, I simply didn't know any better and absolutely no thought of health went into my eating habits. It simply felt so good to eat cooked food that I just assumed that if it wasn't safe It wouldn't be sold in the stores.
As the years went by, getting the regular colds and flu's that everyone else was getting seemed to make less and less sense and I began asking myself why I felt it was normal to get sick on a regular basis. I also started to notice that I felt bloated, blocked up, full of mucus and constipated but the problem was that I'd always felt like that but for some reason I was starting to become more sensitive to it.
Eventually, it reached the point where I couldn't stand to eat anymore cooked food, the more I ate, the more bloated I felt and I could hardly breath because of the mucus build up. So that summer, I stopped eating cooked food altogether and for some reason, I started eating fruit. The strange thing was that I had never touched fruit before that.
I just went out and went with my instincts. I started with mangos, melons and grapes. I was in HEAVEN! It felt so good. The quality of my health got better, my skin became bright and clear, my body odors disappeared, I felt much more energetic, I could breath clearly and my stomach was no longer bloated.
All the changes felt so right that I wanted to commit myself to just eating fruits all the time. I did some research and I later learned that cooked food is refined, processed, manipulated, manufactured and for the most part is unnatural and often has additives, preservatives, addictive ingrediants such as MSG's, etc put in it.
After learning all this information, in my heart, I knew I just wanted to eat fruits and, again, while researching on the internet, I found out that, low and behold, there was such a thing as Fruitarianism. I proceeded to do more research and take the first steps towards making it happen. Now, as a longtime Fruitarian, I personaly believe that back at the dawn of time, we were foragers and we ate whatever we were attracted to, things such as fruits, nuts, etc. in their fresh natural state. I don't believe for one minute that we were naturally attracted to eating living animals complete with hair, scales, claws and all. That would be like looking at your pet dog and thinking how tasty it would be between two burger buns.
(RG): I get bloated and feel terrible when I eat animal. I don't each much of it at all. I've never been a big meat eater. But I understand what you are saying because it makes since and humans do live like you described. I get my protein mainly from protein drinks and bars. Do most fruitarians get protien from other sources?
(R: For the most part, experienced Fruitarians will avoid sources of high protein because we believe that we get what we need in the correct amounts from fresh fruits. But, as I said before, going Fruitarian is such a personal journey and it's really up to the individual and their level of experience, for instants a lot of people new to Fruitarianism will overeat on nuts, dried fruits and fats simply because they miss the heavy blocked up feeling that cooked food gave them. The problem is that all nuts, unless stated as raw, are heat treated in some way, which is another reason why most experienced Fruitarians will avoid them. There's a lot of pressure put on people to comply with modern nutritional recommendations but generally the more experienced Fruitarians don't live by the modern nutritional recommendations. Instead, they listen to the day- to- day needs of their body.
(RG): I heard that you have opened up a Dallas Fitness Club. Can you tell me more about that?
(R: Yes. It's actually a Club I set up to get people from all walks of life together and getting active and to show the benefits of choosing better eating habits. We focus on exercises that come natural to our bodies such as running, walking and calithenics. I did this partly because getting active is a great way to get people thinking about better performance through better eating habits. I found that Raw Vegans were often pretty sluggish due to all their energy being used in the clean up process and were struggling and paying the price for not getting active.
I myself was caught up in the typical Raw Vegan mentality of being lazy and complaining about every single ache and pain but, I soon realized that I was feeling that way because I wasn't helping my body with eliminating the waste that the fruits were stirring up, by getting active and by not getting active. I was just holding in all the waste that I needed to get out. I soon realized that getting active was the key element to success as a Fruitarian. I put this down to a lack of education and genuine leadership as there are very few people that actually make the transition to Fruitarianism/Raw Veganism, let alone getting fit too. So, I guess with this club, I'm kind of leading by example and showing people that getting Raw and active can of great benefit during the detoxification process and beyond.
I don't charge a membership fee, monthly subscription or get anyone to sign a contract. I believe that if you really want to help people you will do it for free. It's also my vision to build a stronger community and support network for individuals that want to pursue a better quality of life and well being with other like minded people.
Young or old, fit or not it - doesn't matter. I'm trying to encourage people to take that first step and come as they are and take part in various activities such as hiking, trail running, backpacking, canoeing/kayaking, mountain biking, rock climbing, camping, potlucks and anything else we can think of, where we can meet up and socialize, share Raw Vegan experiences, discuss health and fitness, etc. - raw or not, everyone is welcome to join in on the fun.
For me, it's up to the individual what goals they set for themselves because we all understand that we all have to start from somewhere and we all recognize that we can only get to where we want to be by putting the work in. Our goal is simply to help you get to where you want to be. So, for that reason, we all strive to provide a motivating and supportive environment.
(RG): Very impressive. You are so right about if you are really wanting to do something for someone, you wouldn't charge a fee. When a person charges a fee, it's helping them, not the other people. Tell me about the hike and pot luck you had recently.
(R: It was pretty nerve racking, waiting for people to show up, especially when I really had no way of publishing it before hand. It pretty much came about from conversations with various people that turned into action. It turned out that all but one of the people that said they were going to show up actually showed up and we actually had a great time. I wasn't sure what to expect but, I knew that the shyness and anticipation would melt away as soon as we hit those hills. We were blessed with great sunny weather and dry conditions. We set off on a difficult hilly trail and although we had kids in carriers and on foot, I knew we could complete it. We just took it easy, yet still got our workout done. We took a break halfway through at a stopping point and it was great to see everyone coming together and discussing their raw experiences and sharing advice. It warmed my heart to see.
The guys did really well, my wife did excellent and they beat those hills in good style. It got tough in parts of our mantra during the hike became "I WANNA SEE THE SWEAT!!!"
When it was all done, we gathered for the potluck and brought out the big guns: watermelon, apples, nuts, and other's brought some homemade juice, which went down real well in the Texas heat. One of the juices nearly knocked me out because it tasted like "gin & juice" but,it was just a strange mix of pineapple, aloe vera and oranges. A good day was had by all and the slower pace was a good chance for me to actually see the scenery that was around me instead of whizzing straight through it like I would normally do if I was by myself.
(RG): That sounds like that would have been fun. Sometimes a slow pace hike is good. Like you said, so you can enjoy it. How many followers do you have in the fruitarian?
(R: When it comes to the Fruitarian Lifestyle, I don't believe in people being followers. I believe in sharing information and encouraging people that come to me for advice to experience the Fruitarian lifestyle for themselves. I don't believe in spoon feeding information to people or soft soaping issues. I tell it like it is. I've got nothing to sell so, I don't have to pet or pamper people. For me, it's all about tough love and getting people to realize that they got to put the work in to get the results. I've been called "Hardcore" many times and a lot of people get scared or shy away from me and my group because they know that I don't listen to excuses and that I'm going to push them outside of their comfort zone. But, I've learned that you got to get "hardcore" about your health because nothing about going Fruitarian is easy and support is going to be pretty hard to find.
On my forum, I currently have over 20 members and we've seen many people come and go on there but, the guys that have stuck with it have amazed themselves by achieving great things. We are very supportive but at the same time, we keep it real. We don't stand for any nonsence because some of the guys are going through some sensitive issues due to detoxification. Keeping the environment positive is a key element to their success. There's also many, many people that contact me via email that I help out too. My whole philosophy with all of this is that I'm not here to be a Fruitarian guru, I'm just a guy that has got further than most and is willing to share his personal journey.
(RG): How do you feel your health differs from those that eat american/western diets?
(R: Over ther years, I've learned that cooked food is extremely dehydrating because, the cooking process robs it of oxygen, water and enzymes which puts more work on the body to digest it and get rid of it's waste. This continual process will eventually rob the body of it's energy and ablity to rebuild or protect itself from disease. Whenever I used to quit Fruitarianism and go back to cooked foods, all my aches, pains and allergies, etc. would return like clock work. Now back on Fruitarianism, I'm experiencing the best health I've ever had and by getting active, my stamina and strength have gone sky high. I just want to show everybody that with dedication and patience, they too, can experience improved health and well being.
(RG): You really do sound so positive about what you are doing. What do you feel stands out the most about a fruitarian lifestyle?
(R: For me, it's got to be the urge to get active and building muscle. I've been on both sides of the track, I've been a hard core meat eater and I'm now living life as a Fruitarian. I can honestly say that if I eat cooked food, my motivation to get out and do what I enjoy goes away and I feel heavy and sluggish. Another thing is, that back in the day when I was on cooked food, what I thought was muscle was not and I now realize that the rules we lived by when we were on cooked food don't apply when you go raw, The problem is that cooked food gave me the impression of mass and bulk but really it was just water retention and fats, When I go raw, my body gets rid of all of that and I would feel naked. Unfortunatly, our bodies don't know anything about machismo and goes about doing it's job of cleansing us.
It took me years to come to terms with my "nakedness". I would quit many times because I felt embarrassed because I was too skinny. I learned that my health was more important than my vanity and that cleansing is a process we have to go through and part of that process is letting your body get back down to it's natural size and shape and letting it do what it's got to do.
As far as building muscle goes, I realize that I never really built muscle until I got active as a Fruitarian When I was on cooked food, I was athletic and strong but ,it was all water and fat. Building muscle is a slow process. It's important that, as raw bodybuilders, we set our sights on cleaning first and while your doing that, you can stay active until your body has done cleansing and is ready to grow.
(RG): You are not saying anything I haven't already studied upon. I know what you are saying is true. I am just not 100% positive about eating nothing but fruit. I know God placed fruit on this earth for us to enjoy. I don't believe meat is the answer for our bodies either. So, I am still listening to everything you are saying. But, for some reason, you are opening my eyes more than others have. Do you have any advice to people that wish to build more mass?
(R: Think about your health first, make your gains naturally, find what exercises/activities you enjoy the most and work best for you and do them like there's no tomorrow. Just remember that you get out what you put in so make every workout better than your last!
(RG): What projects do you have in the future?
(R: My aim is to spread the word and show how important it is to get Raw Vegans and Fruitarians up and active via my website, discussion board and outdoors club. I'm also looking to make a Fruitarian Fitness/Day in the life type video or DVD, featuring myself at some point. I have no idea how it's going to happen because I'm operating all this on no budget what so ever but, I'm believing that some way, some how, it will happen. I'm working hard at building up and promoting my outdoors club as it is still in it's infancy.
(RG): Where there is a will, there is a way. Maybe someone that is reading this could have an idea to help you, since you are helping so many other people. If someone wished to contact you, how would they?
(RG): Could you tell me a story of how you have gotten where you are today?
(R: When I first started on my Fruitarian journey, I pretty much had to blaze my own trail. I had no experience or knowledge of raw foods and needless to say, I really wasn't prepared for my detoxification. I had to learn my trade by trail and error. I tried to research but, there wasn't enough information to prepare me. I didn't wean myself off of cooked food gradually. I made the big mistake of thinking I could go cold turkey and after having a great week or two the detoxification, symptoms crept up on me and took me by surprise and before I could get a grip on myself, I was foul, aggressive mentally and physically, resentful towards things that I normally would not bother with!
I also had a lot of anxiety too... my thoughts were very negative. I was lashing out at people that meant a lot to me and I was even worse to the one's that didn't mean anything to me at all! A couple of relationships were fractured in the process. On top of this, I was usually mentally and physicaly exhausted 24-7. Every body thought I was crazy, nobody supported me at all, and I was totally overwhelmed. I didn't have the chance or the skills to detach myself from what was going on inside me like I had planned. I believed every bad thing that was going on in my head to be true. It was impossible for me to tell the difference between fact or fiction at this time. I went from a happy go lucky guy, that every body wanted to be around to the exact opposite! But, it really wasn't anyone's fault.
What was really going on was that I was detoxing! My body was using every thing it had to clean itself! My detox was very uncomfortable because I was eating to many heavy fruits and not enough juicy fruits and my body wasn't flushing out the toxins. So my toxins were just being re-absorbed. It was also the first time I had done anything like this ever! I didn't know what was going on or how to deal with this. My liver/gallbladder was being cleaned and I was releasing my anger/resentment from the past/present and I had a lot of that!! Pretty soon, I built up a healthy resentment towards this Fruitarian diet. It was the cause of so much pain and confusion for me! I decided that I wasn't happy doing it.
I didn't like the change that went on in me. It stopped me from being social and pleasent. It made me lose so much weight and besides, I wanted to eat pizza and fried chicken and fries, ice cream, etc. sooooo bad! I would quit! I'd be happy for a week or two then, I'd start feeling blocked up and bloated again. I would go back to getting sick and feeling like an old man. This would go on for years but, the more I cleansed, the worse I felt . When I went back to cooked food and the more of an opportunity I had to look at how my emotions were controlling my progress.
I've learned that I had to detach myself completely from the get go and also research and learn exactly what my body was going through in the detox process. I began to see what was really going on and help my body instead of getting stressed and making things worse My main problem was getting over my cooked food addiction. I found that condiments and salt were the hardest of all to give up. For example I used to eat 6-9 avocados a day with some type of condiment, then after a while I started to notice that I'd get mad if we had run out of dressing. I began to question if it really was the avocado I was wanting? I stopped using the condiments and now I found that naturally, I can barely eat one avocado a day.
What I found really helped me was writing down my goals and how I felt when I was on cooked food and it also helped to stay from stressful situations/people. I always say that if you have an issue, going fruitarian will bring it to the the surface wherever you like it or not! So, be prepared for a fight. A fight that may last years but it's a fight that WILL get easier but please let me tell you this: YOU'RE NOT GOING TO BE A NICE PERSON OR HAVE A NICE TIME in the begining, you may have cut down on your social activities for a while, stick fast to your goals and don't let this society tell you any different.
When I first started, every body, including the guru's, told me that I couldn't survive on just fruit and that I was "doing it all wrong" but it was the way my body wanted it and to be honest with you, I feel like I'm not of this world. I often feel as though I can blend in with the air I breath. Breaking away from societies addictions was the best choice I ever made and I will never go back. My skin, from head to toe, has transformed from rough and tough to soft and silky. I don't get colds or flu's anymore. I don't feel the aches and pains I used to have. My body has gone to it's natural shape and I'm no longer bloated and constipated. I'm more physically active and at one with my body. But, my biggest victory of all is that I'm no longer a slave to cooked food. My thoughts are clearer and more positive. Don't get me wrong, it's not all sweetness and joy, the world is still what it is and I'm still human but believe me, when I say that the quality of my life has changed for the better, now the thought of growing old before my time and leaving strangers responsible for my health no longer seems mandatory.
(RG): I know you have done most of this alone but you have educated yourself so well. I can see the dedication in you. I can hear it in your words. You have went through detox just like a drug abuser does and you did it alone. Not many people would be here today to talk about it. You have peaked my interest enough that I will be researching this myself. And I understand what you are talking about when you say you don't feel you are of this world. I know I am the same way when I am around other people that eat normally. They eat sweets and snack all day and actually see me as someone that isn't like them since I refuse to eat that stuff. But you know what I have learned? They want to be more like me, they want to be able to say no. They want something to believe in. A goal to reach. But, they don't want it bad enough. Instead, they would rather hate me for achieving it. They would rather shun me, talk about me and turn me away because I have the strength in me to do what they can't or won't. But I use to be on the other side, too, when I ate what they ate, sat around all day and watch TV just like they do. But, I have to tell you, I was miserable...just like they are now continuing to live the way they do. Since I have changed my life, my life is so great! I feel great. I look great. And they hate me for that. But, I just find people that are like me, which is really hard to find this day in time. I look for people that are active, love themselves, and care for themselves. If I don't find anyone like me, I'd rather be alone. Thank you! Okay, enough about me. On with the interview. Do you have anyone you can thank for helping you get where you are?
(R: Yes, mother nature and My wife. Before I met my wife, I was just constantly having to deal with other people's fears about not eating cooked foods, even people that didn't know me would make rude comments on how skinny or bad I looked. Yes, I looked bad and I lost a lot of water and fat, which made me look as if I had lost a bunch of weight. But, I had already accepted the fact that this was what I had to go through to rejuvanate my body. My wife was the person that got me on to cleansing and this was the main element to me gaining muscle because the cleaner I was internaly, the more energy I had to rebuild myself. After my workouts, I was also able to absorb more nutrients from my fruits.
(RG): Do you have any sponsors you would like to mention?
(R: I wish, I'm always looking for sponsors/businesses in the Dallas area to get behind us that can donate their services such as printing RF&O T-shirts, leaflets and flyers/posters or provide space for RF&O, to hold free talks on the active natural lifestyle or hold a RF&O activity/event?
(RG): Where do you want to be in 5 years?
(R: I want to be training, reaching a wider audience, motivating and supporting people in their pursuit of a healthier, more active lifestyle. Ideally, I want to get some sort of natural fitness certification and then have some type of facility for people to come to. Again, I've no idea how all this is going to happen but I know it will.
(RG): Where do you go for your knowledge of bodybuilding?
(R: Vegan bodybuilding.com and Rosstraining.com, plus I do my own research so I can pass on knowledge to members on my forum, I've learned the majority of my bodyweight stuff from rosstraining.com. The guys there are pretty accepting of guys that train that with their bodyweight.
(RG): You talking about www.veganbodybuilding.com, Robert Cheeke, which is one of our Team Real Gainz VIP runs that site. He is awesome! What one secret can you share with me on how to gain the most muscle the fastest?
(R: I guess, most of my info would be more relevant to people going Fruitarian or Raw Vegan but, for me first and foremost, it's all about cleansing then to give the body as little to deal with as possible interms of what you put in your stomach. I've learned that as the years go by, the more troublesome foods you give it to digest, the less energy and resourses it has to get it's other rebuilding duties done.
(RG): Actually, the information you just gave can go to people that are not vegans and fruitians. Everyone needs to make sure their body is cleaned and the energy they have goes to being active, not spend on trying to digest food. You are married, right? Can you tell me about her?
(R: Married to the most beautiful women in the world, she's been very supportive even when, at times, it's been hard to understand the changes I go through.
(RG): It sounds like we need to do an interview with her and name it, "My life with a Fruitian". Have kids, can you tell me more about them?
(R: I have two children living in Dallas,Texas. My wife has always been extremely supportive of my choice of lifestyle. She's an inspiration and the other half of my heart. We raise our two kids as vegans and they have access to as much raw foods in their diet as they wish. We count ourselves lucky, because both children enjoy eating fruits. My daughter has greater access to them, because she spends more time with me at home.
It's such a great feeling when you actually hear your child pleading and even throwing a fit for fruits. It's a better feeling when you go shopping and you're picking up grapes as snacks for the children instead of cookies. My wife and I like to take every opportunity to teach the children as much as we can about respecting animals and their environment.
I also run a rescue mission for Doberman Pinschers, which is handy because the children get to see the correct way to treat and care for dogs that have been neglected. We have our own Doberman called Luke, and he came to us with all kinds of allergies. But now he's raw too and no longer has allergies. I've come to some of my best insights just by watching Lukes progress on raw foods.
(RG): I've never thought about that! My mom's dog will scratch itself silly from allergies. It mostly comes on her dog when she feeds him meat! Hummm.....Something to think about....Who had the most impact on you growing up?
(R: My mother and my uncle Tony, for their mental toughness but ,most of all, it was the people that I Rugby League brought into my life that took me under their wing when I was just a young kid away from home like Alf Tattersfield, Mick Smyth and Malcomn Shuttleworth and Trevor Oldroyd, my old amature Rugby coaches, for seeing something special in me and taking time out to pass on their knowledge. I'll always say that Rugby League saved me from following the wrong path, it was the Father I never had, it's hard and uncompremising work ethics taught me how to be honest and honourable. let's face it, when your playing in front of 2-3000 people and the fate of the game rests on you because your on your try line and you have a 250-300lb dude intent on running through you to score because your the smallest person in the line, you soon find out what your made of.
(RG): Any shout outs?
(R: To my wife and children and all the poeple that said I would not succeed.
David Klien at Living Nutrition.com
Ross Enamait and the guys at rosstraining.com
Robert Cheeke at Vegan Bodybuilding and Fitness
Richard Watts from godfist.com
To anybody that felt they had the right to shoot my dreams down
Frank Obudo, my friend, and "ghetto gym" workout partner
(RG): Now look, all of those people that tried to shoot your dreams down, how many magazines have they been featured in? (laughing) Nanny nanny boo boo! What is your greatest achievement in life?
(R: For me personally, it was getting married to a supportive woman that I could share my life with.
(RG): Well, she has a well educated, respectful man that cares a lot about her. What is the proudest moment of your life?
(R: Becoming a dad. It was my first child and we are into the whole natural child birth thing so, we had a mid-wife and our daughter was born at home and my wife had no medication. I got to be in the middle of everything. It was amazing and I simply can't imagine why any guy wouldn't want to be at the birth of their child. So, I got to say that the proudest and most moving moment is being there for my wife and being the first person to see the top of my daughters head appear for the first time, then within a minute she was born.
(RG): My ex-husband was there when our son was born and he will say the exact same thing, what a chance of a life time it is to share the birth of your child with your spouse. He still talks about it. What are your interested outside of bodybuilding?
(R: First and foremost comes my family then, comes the great outdoors. I'm all about living life to the fullest and I'm pretty much up for trying any outdoor activity, but there's nothing like getting out on the trails, putting some tough routes together and going on a long hard hike, bare chested, with the hot sun beating down. It's my dream to one day take my family to see the sights of different places around the world.
Also, I'm a great fan of Tattoo's. If I had the money to spare, I'd be covered from head to toe. Helping people that want to go raw has unexpectedly become a big part of my life. I also run a Dobie rescue for unwanted Dobermans.
(RG): What is the one thing you would like to change about yourself, if you could?
(R: I'm not business/money orientated...I'm always helping people out and doing stuff for free! I really should turn this raw thing into a business like everyone else does but, I don't believe in making people pay for something that mother nature already gave to us for free!
(RG): What are your PR's in press ups, squats, pull ups, and Dips?
(R: Bodyweight reps in one hour:
Dips: 800 Chins: 420 Press ups: 2015 Squats: 540 calf raises: 4000 One Handed push ups: 700 In one set:
Press ups: 160 Chins: 36 Dips: 100 squats: 400 Handstand push ups: 28 One leg calf raises: 2614 (RG): Do you use dumbbells, free weights, machine or all of the above?
(R: No, I do Calisthenics/bodyweight exercises
(RG): Explain why.
(R: It actually started off with me being sick and tired of not having the weights equipment I needed to continue with my workouts, I had ran out of weights and didn't have the money to buy anymore. For this reason, I was also contemplating on joining a gym, so in between time I started messing around and making up the rest of my routine with push ups and bodyweight squats until I could figure out what I wanted to do. I didn't really know what I was doing but from there I went on to doing as many reps as I could do in an hour and I found that it was actually harder and more enjoyable than my regular weights routine and by this time the idea of spending money every month on a gym membership plus all the fee's that go with it, just wasn't sitting well with me at all. Before I knew it, one thing had led to another and it wasn't long before I had created a full body routine of bodyweight exercises and making solid gains. The longer I continued doing the bodyweight stuff, the more I learned that there was a whole lot more I could do without needing to use any weights or spending money on gym fee's. I felt that this discovery went hand in hand with my Fruitarian lifestyle and my efforts to get Raw Vegans more active and wanted to find a way of sharing my message and so Raw Fitness and outdoors was born and as they say, the rest is history.
(RG): What is your favorite exercise and why?
(R: I'm not really sure if I have a favorite because I love them all for different reasons but, I really get a kick out of doing dips because it's a classic example of the use of brute strength and I always make good gains with dips. I feel like a beast after each set. I think I'm just a fan of the pushing exercises in general.
(RG): It has been really a pleasure interviewing you. We are about to close, If you have anything else you would like to add, now is the time:
(R: Yes, thanks for having me and giving me the opportunity to share my story.....THERE'S NO EXCUSES FOR BETTER HEALTH WE ALL GOT TO GET UP AND BE ACTIVE Y'ALL. WE ARE ALL GETTING OLDER AND WE ONLY GET ONE BODY AND ONE LIFE AND DON'T LEAVE YOUR HEALTH IN THE HANDS OF OTHERS!!!!!!!!!!!
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Hira Ratan Manek was born on September 12, 1937 in Bodhavad, India and was raised in Calicut, Kerala, India. Since his retirement, he began to study sun gazing, which he had been interested in since childhood. The method he chose was old and forgotten, yet had been practiced in ancient times in various parts of the world. After studying the method for three years, he was able to discover the secrets of sun gazing. During his study, he was mainly inspired from the teachings of Lord Mahavir of Jains, who was also practicing this method two thousand years ago. Other inspirations came from the ancient Egyptians, Greeks, and Native Americans. Since June 18th, 1995, HRM has and continues to live only on sun energy and water. Occasionally, for hospitality, and social purposes, he drinks tea, coffee and buttermilk. Until now, he had three strict fastings, during which he had just sun energy and water and was under the control and observation of a team of medical doctors. The first of these fastings lasted 211 days during 1995-96, followed by a 411 day fast in Ahmedabab in 2000-01. The third was for NASA for 130 days in the US in 2002
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