Non-Traditional Approaches to
the Theories, Treatments and Prevention of Cancer

Mango

March 23, 2015

The mango is said to have originated in Burma, Malaya, or the Himalayan region of India. It has been in cultivation for over 4000 years and has entered prominently in Hindu mythology and religious observances. It is now a familiar fruit to all parts of the tropic zone, and is as important there as the apple is in our more temperate climate.

Although the mango is not too well-known in this country, some parts of the world value this fruit highly. Glowing descriptions of mangoes can be found in the literature of these countries. The Turkoman poet, Amir Khusrau, for instance, wrote of the mango in the fourteenth century: “The mango is the pride of the garden, the choicest fruit of Hindustan. Other fruits we are content to eat when ripe, but the mango is good in all stages of growth.”

The first attempt to introduce the mango into this country was made in 1833, when plants were transported to Florida from Mexico. These trees died, and another attempt was made thirty years later when seedling trees were introduced. The real success of its culture came at the beginning of this century, when choice grafted trees were brought from India. Because the fruit’s susceptibility to frost, its culture is limited to certain sections of Florida, where it is a summer crop only.

The mango tree is a member of the sumac family. Its sometimes grows as high as 40 feet. Its leaves are shiny and its flowers yellow or of a reddish hue. There are hundreds of varieties of mangoes, and they range from the size of plums to that of apples, often weighing a pound or more. The common color of the mango is orange, although the fruit may range from green to yellow or red.

This fruit is available from May to September, the peak month being June. Some varieties are shipped in from China, Jamaica, Mexico and Cuba. A quality mango has a fairly small seed stone, and the pulp is delicate and smooth. The fruit should be fresh in appearance, plump, and firm to the touch; however the test of quality is in its taste.

Mangoes are best eaten as a fresh fruit. They have a high sugar content, although they are slightly acid in taste. Mangoes are good used in combination with other fruits in salads, and in some parts of the world they are roasted. Both the flavor and aroma of mangoes are spicy and attractive. To conserve the aroma, do not cut until just before serving.

THERAPEUTIC VALUE

Mangoes contain a considerable amount of gallic acid, which may be binding to the bowels. It is excellent as a disinfectant to the body. Many people claim the mango is a great blood cleanser,and it also has fever-soothing qualities. mango juice will reduce excessive body heat. Mangoes are also wonderful for helping to throw off body odors.

NUTRIENTS IN ONE POUND

Calories 198

Protein 2.1g

FAT 0.6g

Carbohydrates 51.6g

Calcium 27mg

Phosphorus 39mg

Iron 0.6g

Vitamin A 14,5901I.U.

Thiamine 0.19mg

Riboflavin 0.17mg

Niacin 2.8 mg

Ascorbic acid 106mg

Cabbage

March 16, 2015

Cabbage was widely grown in ancient China. In fact, the workers on the Great Wall so many years ago were fed on cabbage and rice. When winter came, wine was added to the cabbage to preserve it, producing a sour cabbage pleasant to the taste, which didn’t spoil. A thousand years later the Tartars under Genghis Khan conquered China and carried sour cabbage with them as they overran other parts of the world. The vitamin C in cabbage was enough to prevent scurvy, the deficiency disease which killed many soldiers on long marches in ancient times.

When the Tartars came to Eastern Europe they were still eating sour cabbage, but they were preserving it with salt rather than wine. The Russians, Poles and Austrians tasted this food of their conquerors and liked it. The Austrians named it sauerkraut. The Dutch brought cole slaw to America, its name deriving from kool for cabbage and slaw for salad: cabbage salad.

Raw cabbage has been known from antiquity as a remedy for drunkenness. Eating cabbage with vinegar before a drinking bout and after a feast would prevent one from feeling too strongly the effects of the wine or beer.

Pliny, the Roman naturalist, thought the best cabbages were those tiny heads that grow on the stalk after the original big head is picked. Gardeners who leave the cabbage stalk in the ground usually find these a few weeks later.

On St. Patrick’s Day a dish of corned beef and cabbage, while delicious, is more American than Irish. The dish is a variation of a traditional Irish meal but because early Irish-Americans were poor, beef was a cheaper alternative to traditional pork, and cabbage happened to be a springtime vegetable.

THERAPEUTIC VALUE

Down through the centuries cabbage has been used for just about every purpose industrious herb doctors could experiment with: chronic coughs, colic, constipation, dysentery, toothache, gout, pains in the liver, deafness, insomnia and many other ailments. Contrarily, some writers on herb medicines declared that cabbage should be avoided because of its tendency to cause flatulence.

Today we know that long cooking produces the sulfur compounds which, in the past, gave cabbage its bad name. Heat, soaking in water or cooking for too long a time break down the sulfur compounds and create the digestive problems some people have with cabbage. Serve cabbage raw if you would get the most out of it, nutritionally speaking. If you must cook it, make it brief—no more than a few minutes in a tiny bit of water. Shred or chop it finely before cooking, so that this short cooking time will be enough.

Cabbage is one of our best sources of vitamin C—raw, it may contain up to 50 milligrams per serving. It also contains considerable potassium and vitamin A. One half cup contains only 10 calories, so it is an excellent “filler” food for the calorie-counter. A dressing of lemon juice or vinegar adds almost no calories. Mayonnaise or other oily salad dressing is suitable if you are counting carbohydrate units rather than calories. When you shred cabbage for slaw for cooking, prepare it as soon as possible before eating. It loses vitamin C with every additional moment it stands before eating. Keep the cabbage head in the refrigerator and, if you don’t use it all at one meal, cover the cut side with waxed paper or foil to keep out all air.

NUTRITIONAL VALUE

Calories: 22

Protein: 1.1 g

Fat: 0.1 g

Carbohydrates: 5.2 g

Calcium: 35.6 mg

Phosphorus: 23.1 mg

Iron: .4 mg

Vitamin A: 87.2 I.U.

Thiamine: 0.1 mg

Riboflavin: 0.1 mg

Niacin: 0.2 mg

Pineapple

March 9, 2015

Pineapples were cultivated in the West Indies long before Columbus visited there. But after his voyage to the island of Guadeloupe, it was recorded in Spain that Columbus had “discovered” the fruit. The pineapple is native to tropical America and was known to the Indians as na-na, meaning fragrance, and to the Spanish explorers as piiia, because of its resemblance to a pine cone.

History does not record how pineapples first reached Hawaii. For many years they grew wild. Then, a young Bostonian started commercial production of them there in 1901 on twelve acres of land. His company has enlarged to the present 25,000 acres. The plant of this fruit grows from two to four feet high, with a rosette of stiff, sword-shaped leaves growing from its base. Out of the rosette center grows a single, fleshy, scaly-coated fruit that is four to ten inches long. A cluster of sword-shaped leaves surmounts the fruit.

Pineapples are grown in many parts of the world, but the United States is supplied principally from Cuba, Mexico, Hawaii, and Puerto Rico. They may be obtained all year long, but are most abundant from March through July. The peak months are June and July.

A ripe pineapple in quality condition has a fresh, clean appearance, a distinctive darkish orange-yellow color, and a decided fragrance. The “eyes” of the fruit are flat and almost hollow. If the fruit is mature it is usually heavier in proportion to its size. To test for ripeness, pull at the spikes. If they pull out easily, the fruit is ripe; discolored areas, or soft spots, are an indication of bruised fruit.

THERAPEUTIC VALUE

High in vitamin C, the pineapple is considered to be a protective fruit. It is wonderful for constipation and poor digestion. The pineapple helps digest proteins, and can be used in elimination diets. It leaves an alkaline ash in the body. Pineapple is thought to have a certain amount of iodine because it grows near the ocean. When buying canned pineapple, make sure it is unsweetened. Pineapple goes well with fruit and nuts, and is good to eat on a fruit diet.

NUTRIENTS IN ONE POUND

Calories 123

Protein 1g

Fat 0.5g

Carbohydrates 33g

Calcium 39mg Niacin 0.5mg

Phosphorus 19mg Ascorbic acid 40mg

Iron 1.2mg

Vitamin A: 170 I.U.

Thiamine 0.20mg

Radish

March 2, 2015

The radish is a member of the mustard family, but is also related to cabbage, cauliflower, kale, and turnips. After this vegetable was introduced into Middle Asia from China in prehistoric times, many forms of the plant were developed. Radishes are a cool season crop, and the peak period is April through July. The American varieties can be used for both roots and tops in salads, and cooked.

A good-quality radish is well-formed, smooth, firm, tender, and crisp, with a mild flavor. The condition of the leaves does not always indicate quality, for they may be fresh, bright, and green, while the radishes may be spongy and strong, or the leaves may be wilted and damaged in handling, while the radishes themselves may be fresh and not at all pithy. Old, slow-growing radishes are usually strong in flavor, with a woody flesh. Slight finger pressure will disclose sponginess or pithiness.

THERAPEUTIC VALUE

Radishes are strongly diuretic and stimulate the appetite and digestion. The juice of raw radishes is helpful in catarrhal conditions. The mustard oil content of the radish makes it good for expelling gallstones from the bladder.

A good cocktail can be made with radishes. This cocktail will eliminate catarrhal congestion in the body, especially in the sinuses. It will also aid in cleansing the gall bladder and liver. To make this cocktail, combine one-third cucumber juice, one-third radish juice, and one-third green pepper juice. If desired, apple juice may be added to make this more palatable. An excellent cocktail for nervous disorders is made from radish juice, prune juice, and rice polishings. This drink is high in vitamin B and aids in the flow of bile.

NUTRIENTS IN ONE POUND

Calories: 49

Protein: 2.9g

Fat: .3g

Carbohydrates: 10.3g

Calcium: 86mg

Phosphorus: 89mg

Iron: 2.9mg

Vitamin A: 30 I.U.

Thiamine: .09mg

Riboflavin: .09mg

Niacin: .9mg

Ascorbic Acid: 74mg

Orange

February 23, 2015

The orange is one of the oldest fruits known in the history of cultivation. As early as 500 B.C. the fruit of the citrus tree was mentioned in a collection of old documents believed to be edited by Confucius himself. In the year A.D. 1178, Han Yen-Chi, a Chinese horticulturist, wrote on the subject of oranges, and the seedless orange was mentioned in these writings. This author speaks of twenty-seven varieties of “very valuable and precious” oranges.

Oranges were originally brought from China to India, and gradually spread over the entire world where the climate was mild enough for their cultivation. The sour orange, or “Naranga” as it was referred to in Sanskrit about A.D. 100. came into cultivation in the basin of the Mediterranean long before the fall of the Roman Empire. The sweet variety, or “Airavata,” does not appear to have been cultivated until early in the fifteenth century, and then became so popular that it was soon being cultivated extensively throughout Southern Europe. The Moors brought the Seville orange from the East.

Wild oranges were found in the West Indies and Brazil as early as1600. The early Spanish explorers are believed to have brought oranges with them to this country in the time of Ponce de Leon’s quest for the Fountain of Youth. In California, the orange was cultivated at the San Diego Mission in 1769 and, in the year 1804, 400 seedlings grew into a grove of considerable size around the San Gabriel Mission. The popularity of the orange, particularly in the favorable climate of California, grew rapidly, until it soon developed into a leading industry. The orange became known as “California’s liquid sunshine.”

The original orange was very small, bitter, and full of seeds, but through constant efforts in cross-fertilization and selection, many varieties of this delicious fruit are now cultivated with a tremendous improvement in the quality of the fruit. The sweet oranges are, by far, the most popular, while the sour orange is used more for its propagating stock than for its fruit. Unless killed by frost or fire, the orange tree lives to an old age and continues to bear fruit throughout its lifetime.

More than two hundred varieties of oranges are grown in the United States. In 1919 the United States produced only about 25 percent of the world’s total output of oranges, but now it produces about half. Oranges comprise about 60 percent of the citrus fruit grown in the United States.

Oranges are available every day of the year, but are most abundant in the United States from January to May. California, Florida, and Texas are the orange-producing states, and each of these states ships great quantities. California’s vast Valencia orange acreage is now more extensive than the Navel orange plantings. This state now has about 150.000 acres of Valendas, and about 100,000 acres of Navels, with an additional few thousand acres of miscdanmus orange varieties. The largest proportion of the California orange crop-about 85 to 90 percent, comes from southern California.

Choose the first oranges of the season, for they are the richest in mineral values. Tree-ripened oranges have, by far, the greatest mineral content. The best quality orange is firm and heavy, has a fine-textured skin varying in texture according to variety, and is well-colored. The light orange lacks juice. Avoid the soft, flabby, or shriveled orange and those oranges with any soft or moldy areas upon them. Do not eat unripe oranges because they can cause stomach upsets. particularly in small children. Once the skin is cut or broken, the fruit should be eaten immediately as the vitamin C is banned by exposure to the air. If orange juice is kept for a period of time, store in the refrigerator in an airtight container.

The orange is classified as a subtropical fruit and has a citric add content of 1.5 percent. This alkaline-reacting fruit is best eaten with other tropical or subtropical fruits, with add fruits, or with nuts or milk. It is best to avoid eating this fruit with starches or sweets, or with dried fruits.

Use oranges as a dessert fruit, with yogurt, or in combination salads. Make a cup of a segmented orange the thick-skinned seedless orange is best for segmenting-and nil with cottage cheese. Make liquefied drinks, mixing orange juice with other subtropical or tropical fruits such as cactus fruits, loquats, mango, papaya, persimmon, pineapple, pomegranate, apples, and citrus fruits. Many have advised eating oranges or drinking orange juice with meals, early in the morning on an empty stomach, or directly following a meal if the body is in a highly add condition.

The orange is one of the best sources of water-soluble vitamin C. The absence or insufficiency of this causes scurvy. As vitamin C is the least stable of all the vitamins, storage of orange juice at low temperature destroys the vitamin to some extent, and sterilization may destroy it completely. Generally, I think it is best to use the citric add fruits in sections rather than in juices. When the orange is eaten in sections, the mineral material found in the pulp will help to neutralize the citric add effect as it goes into the body.

Citrus fruits are high in sodium, but only when completely matured in the sunshine. The fruit acids from green or immature fruit cause many adverse body reactions.

If the section and bulk of the orange is fresh and sweet, it is an excellent food for children as a supplement for those who must drink cow’s milk, or any milk, because it seems to help in the retention of calcium in the body. Ripe oranges contain as much as 10 percent fruit sugar, which can be immediately assimilated by the body.

THERAPEUTIC VALUE

Oranges are the most popular source of Vitamin C. They are excellent for treating over acid body conditions, constipation, or a particularly sluggish intestinal tract. In cases of acidosis, drink orange juice, or eat oranges after meals. If the intestinal tract is not functioning properly, drink a large glass of orange juice upon wakening in the morning, or about one-half hour before breakfast. In the cases of stomach acid deficiency, start the meal with a peeled orange or a glass of orange juice.

Those who suffer from tooth decay or poor gums are probably lacking in vitamin C and should drink large amounts of orange juice for a period of a few weeks. People with gastric and duodenal ulcers are deficient in ascorbic acid, and their diet should be supplemented with a high potency vitamin C such as that found in fresh oranges and orange juice.

Orange are very good for elimination. They stir up the acid accumulations and catarrhal settlements in the body very quickly. However, sometimes this is not a good idea if the channels of elimination, such as skin and kidneys, are not able to take out these acids fast enough.

Eat the whole orange, excluding the very outer skin, to get all the good from the fruit. The luscious orange is rated tops in importance in the contribution to health.

NUTRIENTS IN ONE POUND

Calories: 164

Protein: 2.9g

Fat: 0.7 g

Carbohydrates: 36.6 g

Calcium: 108 mg

Phosphorus: 75 mg

Iron: 1.3 mg

Vitamin A: 9101 I.U.

Thiamine: .25mg

Riboflavin: .08 mg

Niacin: .08 mg

Ascorbic acid: 162 mg

Banana

February 16, 2015

Bananas were cultivated in India 4,000 years ago. In 1482, the Portuguese found the banana on the Guinea coast and carried it with them to the Canary Islands. Spanish priests are credited with having introduced this fruit to tropical America when they arrived as missionaries in the sixteenth century. Now, the banana can be found in all tropical countries.

The first known species of banana is the plaintain. or cooking banana. The plaintain has a salmon-colored a ch&, gummy texture, and a slightly add taste. This fruit has been a substitute for bread or potatoes in many countries, and is slowly being introduced to the United States.

Bananas are usually harvested green, shipped green, and ripened by wholesale fruit jobbers in air-conditioned ripening rooms. The Gros Michel variety is the most popular of the many varieties. It produces the largest and most compact bunch, which makes it easier to ship. The thick skin of the banana protects the soft fruit.

Other popular varieties of banana are the Claret, or red banana, which has a gummy flesh; the Lady Finger, which is the smallest variety, but has a delicate, sweet flavor; and the Apple, which has an add flavor and tastes somewhat like a mellow apple.

In the tropics, bananas are often cooked and served with beans, rice, or tortillas. In the Latin American countries, the ripe banana is sometimes dried in the sun in much the same manner as figs and raisins. They arc often sliced when ripe and left in the sun until they are covered with a coating of white, sugary powder that arises from their own juices.

The banana has no particular growing season. A ripe banana is firm, with a plump texture, strong peel, and no trace of green on the skin. A skin that is flecked with brown means the fruit is good. Fully ripe bananas are composed of 76 percent water, 20 percent sugar, and 12 percent starch.

THERAPEUTIC VALUE

The sugars in the banana are readily assimilated, and they contain many vitamins and minerals, and a great deal of fiber. They are excellent for young children and infants and are good in reducing diets because they satisfy the appetite and are low in fat. Because they are so soft, they are good for persons who have intestinal disturbances, and for convalescents. Bananas feed the natural acidophilus bacteria of the bowel, and their high potassium content benefits the muscular system.

NUTRIENTS IN ONE POUND (edible portion)

Calories: 299

Protein: 3.6 g

Fat: 0.6 g

Carbohydrates: 69.9 g

Calcium: 24 mg

Phosphorus: 85 mg

Iron: 1.8 mg

Vitamin A: 1,300 I.U.

Thiamine: 0.27 mg

Riboflavin: 0.19 mg

Niacin: 1.7 mg

Ascorbic acid: 29 mg

Passion Fruit

February 9, 2015

While the origin of the Passion Fruit plant is unknown, it is generally believed to be native to Brazil where 16th Century Spanish Catholics named it “Flor de las cinco llagas” or “flower of the five wounds” after its distinctive purple flower. Today, about 400 years later, passion fruit is grown nearly everywhere in the tropical belt but known by a variety of different names. Its common name is Maracuya in Ecuador and Brazil, Parcha in Venezuela, Lilikoi in Hawaii, and Chinola or Parchita in Puerto Rico.

Botanically this exotic fruit belongs to the family of Passifloraceae, of the genus Passiflora. Scientific name: Passiflora edulis. The plant is an avid climber (vine) which grows on anything it can grab through tendrils.

Passion Fruit was introduced into Hawaii in 1880 and it quickly became popular in home gardens. It naturalized in Hawaii’s almost perfect climate and, by 1930, could be found wild on all the islands of the Hawaiian chain. In 1951, the University of Hawaii chose passion fruit as the most promising crop for agricultural development and undertook a program to create an industry for production of quick-frozen passion fruit juice concentrate. By 1958 the plantings had expanded to cover 490 hectares and the industry was rather well established.

Long-term success was not to be however. Viruses damaging the vines, high labor costs, and the rapidly increasing value of land combined to wipe out this young industry. Today, there are no more commercial passion fruit plantations left in Hawaii but the fruit’s unique flavor remains deeply rooted in the taste preferences of the Hawaiian people. Large quantities of passion fruit juice and concentrate are shipped to Hawaii every year. It is thought, as a matter of fact, that Hawaii may well have the highest per capita consumption of passion fruit juice in the world.

Australia is another area of high passion fruit consumption, again, due to history and familiarity. Passion fruit flourished there before 1900 in what had been banana fields. It attained great importance until 1943 when the vines were devastated by a widespread virus. Although some plantations have been rebuilt, they can not produce enough passion fruit to satisfy the demand and imports make up the balance.

It is in South America that most of the world’s passion fruit is currently grown. Starting in the mid 1950’s, passion fruit cultivation became widespread in Colombia and Venezuela. Later it spread to Ecuador. Today, South America, and particularly Ecuador, is the main exporter of passion fruit concentrate to the Western World.

When compared to huge crops like banana (estimated 45 million MT per year), the production of passion fruit is miniscule…only an estimated 640,000 MT. The market for fresh fruit is almost nonexistent in the U.S. although this may change as consumers reach out for new, different, and more exotic fruit and produce. In Brazil however, fresh passion fruit is immensely popular. The demand is so strong that although they grow much of their own fruit, they have had to import additional supplies, primarily from Ecuador, in recent years. In Brazil, the fruit is used in fresh beverages made both at home and in “stalls” or juice stands popular throughout the country.

The passiflora plant requires well-drained fertile soil and good moisture to flourish. It grows quickly and reaches about 15-20 feet per annum once established. Its average life span is about 5-7 years.

Over five hundred cultivate types exist; however, two main type purple and yellow passion fruits are widely cultivated. During each season, the vine bears greenish-white fragrant flowers. The fruit features round to oval shape, 4 to 8 centimeters in diameter, have a tough shell mangosteen-like rind. Average weight is about 35-50 g.

Inside, the fruit consists of membranous sacs containing light orange-colored, pulpy juice with numerous small, hard, dark-brown or black, pitted seeds. Yellow passions are generally larger than the purple varieties, but the pulp of the purple fruit is less acid, richer in aroma and flavor, and has a higher proportion of juicy pulp.

Because of its unique, intense, aromatic flavor characteristics, passion fruit is a “natural” ingredient for juice blends. It has also been described as a natural concentrate and it blends so well with other juice flavors. In Germany, one of the largest juice consuming countries in the world, passion fruit concentrate and banana puree constitute the base of almost every “multivitamin” juice produced. These “multivitamin” juices are second only to apple juice in popularity among Germans.

THERAPEUTIC VALUE

Delicious, passion fruit is rich source of antioxidants, minerals, vitamins and fiber. 100 g fruit contains about 97 calories.

The fruit is a very good source of dietary fiber. 100 g fruit pulp contains 10.4 g or 27% of fiber. Good fiber in the diet helps remove cholesterol from the body. In addition dietary insoluble fiber by acting as a bulk laxative helps protect the colon mucous membrane by decreasing exposure time to toxic substances in the colon as well as binding to cancer-causing chemicals in the colon.

Passion fruit is good in vitamin C, providing about 30 mg per 100 g. Vitamin-C (ascorbic acid) is a powerful water soluble anti-oxidant. Consumption of fruits rich in vitamin C helps the body develop resistance against flu-like infectious agents and scavenge harmful, pro-inflammatory free radicals.

The fruit contains very good levels of vitamin-A (provides about 1274 IU per 100 g), and flavonoid antioxidants such as β-carotene and cryptoxanthin-β. Current research studies suggest that these compounds have antioxidant properties, and along with vitamin A are essential for good eye-sight.

Vitamin A is also required maintaining healthy mucus membranes and skin. Consumption of natural fruits rich in vitamin-A, and flavonoids helps to protect from lung and oral cavity cancers.

Fresh granadilla is very rich in potassium. 100 g fruit pulp has about 348 mg of potassium. Potassium is an important component of cells and body fluids, and helps regulate heart rate and blood pressure. Granadilla is also a very good source of minerals. Iron, copper, magnesium and phosphorus are present in adequate amounts in the fruit.

NUTRIENTS IN ONE FRUIT

Calories: 229

Protein: 2.2 g

Fat: 28 mg

Carbohydrates: 4.2g

Calcium: 28 mg

Phosphorus: 160 mg

Iron: 3.78

Vitamin A: 3002 IU

Thiamine: trace

Riboflavin: .307 mg

Niacin: 3.54 mg

Ascorbic acid: 30 mg

Asparagus

February 2, 2015

The ancient Phoenicians brought asparagus to the Greeks and Romans. It was described in the sixteenth century by the English writer Evelyn as “sperage” and he said that it was “delicious eaten raw with oil and vinegar.”

When selecting asparagus, choose spears that are fresh, firm, and tender (not woody or pithy), with tips that are tightly closed. Watch for signs of decay, such as rot and mold. If the tip of the spear appears wilted, the asparagus is really too old to be good. From the tip to all but an inch of the base, the stalk should be tender. Angular stalks indicate that they are tough and stringy.

Store asparagus wrapped in a damp cloth or waxed paper, and keep refrigerated until you are ready to use it. Asparagus loses its edible quality when it is subjected to dryness and heat, which reduce the sugar content and increase the fiber content.

Asparagus is a perennial herb, and is a member of the Lily of the Valley family. It can be served hot, with drawn butter; cold, in a salad; in soups; and as a sandwich filling or flavoring.

The season for asparagus is February through July, and the peak months are April, May, and June. Early spring asparagus is from California; late spring asparagus is shipped in early April or late May from Maryland, Delaware, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Massachusetts, Michigan, Illinois, and Iowa. Green asparagus is the most nutritious. Some varieties are green-tipped with white butts, and some are entirely white. Most of the white variety is canned.

Asparagus is best when cooked in stainless steel, on low heat. This leaves the shoots tender and retains their original color. If cooked with the tips up, more vitamin B1 and C will be preserved. The liquid can be saved and used in vegetable cocktails.

THERAPEUTIC VALUE

Asparagus acts as a general stimulant to the kidneys, but can be irritating to the kidneys if taken in excess or if there is extreme kidney inflammation. Because it contains chlorophyll, it is a good blood builder.

Green asparagus tips are high in vitamin A, while the white tips have almost none. This food leaves an alkaline ash in the body. Because they have a lot of roughage, only the tips can be used in a soft diet. They are high in water content and are considered a good vegetable in an elimination diet. Many of the elements that build the liver, kidneys, skin, ligaments, and bones are found in green asparagus. Green asparagus also helps in the formation of red blood corpuscles.

NUTRIENTS IN ONE POUND

Calories: 90

Protein: 7.5g

Fat: .7g

Carbohydrates: 13.1g

Calcium: 71mg

Phosphorus: 211mg

Iron: 3.11mg

Vitamin A: 3,430 I.U.

Thiamine: .54mg

Riboflavin: .59mg

Niacin: 3.9mg

Ascorbic Acid: 113mg

Artichoke

January 26, 2015

The artichoke is believed to be native to the area around the western and central Mediterranean. The Romans were growing artichokes over 2000 years ago, and used it as a green and a salad plant.

Artichokes were brought to England in 1548, and French settlers planted them in Louisiana in the mid-nineteenth century. California is now the center of the artichoke crop, and its peak season is March, April, and May although the crop is also available in November and December.

The name “artichoke” is derived from the northern Italian words “articiocco” and “articoclos”, which refer to what we know to be a pine cone. The artichoke bud does resemble a pine cone.

There is a variety of vegetable called the Jerusalem artichoke, but it is not a true artichoke. It is a tuberous member of the sunflower family. Here, we refer to the two types of true artichokes, the Cardoon (cone-shaped) and the Globe. The most popular variety is the Green Globe.

The artichoke is a large, vigorous plant. It has long, coarse, spiny leaves that can grow to three feet long. The artichoke plants may grow as high as six feet tall.

A perennial, the artichoke grows best in cool, but not freezing, weather. It likes plenty of water, and rain and fog, so is best suited to the California coast, especially the San Francisco area.

For a good quality artichoke, select one that is compact, plump, and heavy, yields slightly to pressure, and has large, tightly clinging, fleshy leaf scales that are a good color. An artichoke that is brown is old or has been injured. An artichoke is overmature when it is open or spreading, the center is fuzzy or dark pink or purple, and the tips and scales are hard. March, April, and May are the months when the artichoke is most abundant.

The parts of the artichoke that are eaten are the fleshy part of the leaves and heart, and the tender base. Medium-sized artichokes are best—large ones tend to be tough and tasteless. They may be served either hot or cold, and make a delicious salad.

To prepare artichokes, cut off the stem and any tough or damaged leaves. Was the artichoke in cold running water, then place in boiling water, and cook twenty to thirty minutes, or until tender. To make the artichoke easier to eat, remove the choke in the center, pull out the top center leaves, and, with a spoon, remove the thistle-like inside.

To eat artichokes, pull off the petal leaves as you would the petals of a daisy, and bite off the end.

THERAPEUTIC VALUE

Artichoke hearts and leaves have a high alkaline ash. They also have a great deal of roughage, which is not good for those who have inflammation of the bowel. They are good to eat on a reducing diet.

Artichokes contain vitamins A and C, which are good for fighting off infection. They are high in calcium and iron.

NUTRIENTS IN ONE POUND (including inedible parts)

Calories: 60

Protein: 5.3 g

Fat: 0.4 g

Carbohydrates: 19.2 g

Calcium: 93 mg

Phosphorus: 160 mg

Iron: 2.4 mg

Vitamin A: 290 I.U.

Thiamine: 0.14 mg

Riboflavin: 0.09 mg

Niacin: 1.7 mg

Ascorbic acid: 22 mg

Mushroom

January 19, 2015

The Pharaohs of Egypt monopolized mushrooms for their own use. They thought they were too delicate to be eaten by common people. The Egyptian potentates did not understand the sudden, overnight appearance of mushrooms, and consequently believed they grew magically. By the first century B.C., the mushroom had gained such a fine reputation among epicures of the Roman Empire that the poet Horace celebrated its goodness in verse. The Romans called mushrooms “food of the gods”, and served them on festive occasions. They were thought to provide warriors with unusual strength.

Up to the seventeenth century, only the wild types of mushrooms found growing in meadows and pastures were known. During the reign of Louis XIV, mushroom · growing was introduced in France. Parisian market gardeners experimented to learn the secrets of successful mushroom culture. By 1749 mushroom beds were cultivated in caves and cellars, and the results were much better’ than ·when they were grown outdoors. The British were raising mushrooms in hothouses sometime before 1700.

The commercial production of mushrooms in the United States started in the late 1890s when a group of florists in Chester County, Pennsylvania started growing them under the benches in their greenhouses. The greatest event in the history of mushroom culture in the United States occurred in 1926 when a farmer found a clump of pure white mushrooms in a bed of uniformly cream-colored fungi. Most of the mushrooms grown today are descendants of this white clump.

Mushrooms are now cultivated in specially constructed buildings that are windowless and in which temperature and humidity are controlled. Mushroom spawn is cultivated by laboratory scientists who sell it to the growers for inoculation of the mushroom beds. Such precise methods are necessary to provide pure spawn of known characteristics.

The introduction of mushrooms into gravies, sauces, soups, and other dishes adds zest and flavor, but they also are a fine food when served as a vegetable . Mushrooms require very little preparation. Wash, cut off the bottom portion of the stem if it has dried, and either slice the caps and stems or leave whole, depending on the method of cooking. Butter a deep pan, cut up the mushrooms so they fill the pan to a depth of about two inches, and simmer over a low· heat until the mushrooms are covered with their own juice. This may take more than ten minutes. Then, cook more briskly for about five minutes, until tender. Overcooking toughens mushrooms.

Green plants can get their food by manufacturing it in their leaves from air, water, sunshine , and soil nutrients, but mushrooms cannot do this. They have no leaves, so they must depend on green plants to make their food for them, and they cannot use it unless it is in the process of decay. Mushrooms propagate from spores, a brownish powder shed from the rounded head which, when ripe, opens like a parasol. However, cultivated mushrooms are not reproduced from spores, but from fine strands of mycelium, which are root like growths that spread through organic material. Most wild mushrooms are not poisonous, but unless you know the difference, you should leave them alone. It is not possible to tell by taste which mushrooms are dangerous. Some very unpalatable mushrooms are harmless, while others that have an agreeable taste are poisonous.

Scientists today say that darkness is not the primary requisite for growing mushrooms. They say that, for healthy growth, all mushrooms need constant temperature and protection against drafts.

The term mushroom refers to a large number of different species and varieties of fleshy fungi. Only one species is usually cultivated and that is Agaricus Campestris, which has a straight stem, a smooth cap of a shade varying from white or ivory to brown, and gills of different shades of pink. Most of the cultivated mushrooms grown in the United States are of the white variety variously known as Snow White, White King, White Queen, etc. This variety is very prolific and is preferred by nearly all markets because of its attractive, clean, white appearance.

THERAPEUTIC VALUE

Prior to the mid-1940s, all you needed to do to work up a hot argument among nutritionists was to say the word “mushrooms.” Scientists’ assertions about the food value of mushrooms ranged from calling them’ ‘vegetable beefsteak” full of proteins, to declaring that they had no protein and very little else. This confusion arose partly from the fact that mushrooms of many species were investigated and the results reported under a common head. A June 1946 report by William B. Eccelen, Jr. and Carl R. Fellers of the Massachusetts Agricultural Experiment Station stated that cultivated mushrooms of the Agaricus Campestris type compare favorably in food value to many fresh fruits and vegetables.

Mushrooms are among the few rich organic sources of germanium, which increases oxygen efficiency of the body, counteracts the effects of pollutants, and increases resistance to disease. Because mushrooms are extremely low in calories, they are useful in reducing diets. They are also a good source of vitamin B.

NUTRIENTS IN ONE POUND

Calories: 123

Protein: 11.9 g

Fat: 1.2 g

Carbohydrates: 19.4 g

Calcium: 26 mg

Phosphorus: 510 mg

Iron: 3.5 mg

Vitamin A: trace

Thiamine: 0.41 mg

Riboflavin: 2.02 mg

Niacin: 18.6 mg

Ascorbic acid: 14 mg

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