2014 in Review: High-lights, dude!

Several stories about health and healing dominated news in 2014. The two biggest were the Ebola virus outbreak and the ongoing move to modernize American marijuana laws. The highlights:

Medical marijuana Whether most Americans realize it or not, expanded legalization of marijuana has been and will turn out to be the biggest story of 2014. We’ll mark the ongoing benefits and consequences of this return to sanity for years to come. Like the subtle burp of the open ocean portending an incipient tsunami, the marijuana sea change began in 1996, in the likeliest of locations: California. That’s when the Golden State freed Acapulco Gold and any other cannabis through a program allowing approved people to use the herb for medicinal…

entered on 12/16/14 at 10:07 AM | read more »

High Cholesterol? Think It Through

Vince Gironda’s point of view wasn’t mainstream when he told me about eggs in 1985. In that era, eggs were vilified as a nutritional no-no. Vince preached differently, that eating eggs had nothing to do with serum cholesterol. That was in direct contradiction to what doctors were touting at the time. With heavy influence from the drug industry, the medical establishment had published serum cholesterol thresholds, declaring that high cholesterol caused heart disease and that Americans should start taking statin drugs, the new kids on the block, to lower cholesterol. Vince said nearly everything about that was wrong and turns out he was right.

In a nutshell, the numbers set as “high” cholesterol levels were arbitrary. There is still no…

entered on 12/08/14 at 09:33 AM | read more »

Grab Your Nuts this Christmas

Holiday season swells with junk food treats. Sugar cookies, fudge, candy canes, fruitcakes and more. But amid the high-fructose corn syrup, chemical colorings and trans fats, there is a healthy option. It’s nuts.

Botanically speaking, true nuts are the fruit of the plant order known as Fagales, which includes most common trees. Most the nuts from that group of plants are correctly called tree nuts, including walnuts, chestnuts, pecans and hazelnuts.

When it comes to eating and cooking, though, the term nut describes seeds and kernels also. While technically not nuts, seeds like almonds, cashews, macadamias, Brazil nuts, pistachios and pine nuts go by that misnomer. In fact, a peanut isn’t a nut but a legume and seed, closely related…

entered on 12/01/14 at 01:00 PM | read more »

News You Can Use, November 2014

“We aggregate so you’ll cogitate.”

The Good

Europe Says No to GMO A couple high profile GMO labeling initiatives narrowly failed at the polls this month. There was, however, a sparkle of good news about the anti-GMO movement. The European Union’s Environmental Committee determined that member countries of the EU have the legal right to ban GMOs in basically any way, shape or form. The approved text would entitle member states to pass legally binding acts restricting or prohibiting the cultivation of GMO crops even if they have been authorized at EU level. They could also ask, when a new GMO crop is being assessed at EU level, to adjust the geographical scope of the authorization.

European countries generally ban…

entered on 11/24/14 at 10:20 AM | read more »

Trouble Sleeping? Meditation vs. The Drunken Monkey

A friend visits from Los Angeles two or three times a year. Often when he’s here, the topic of sleeplessness creeps into conversation. Last time, I invited him to tell me about it.

“I have no problem falling asleep,” he said. That’s understandable. He’s one of the hardest working people I know. At day’s end, he’s exhausted. “But after a couple hours, I wake up and can’t go back to sleep. My thoughts are racing with things I have to do or problems or creative ideas. I can’t stop thinking. My mind is spinning like a, like a…”

“Drunken monkey?” I offer.

“Yes, exactly, like a drunken monkey.”

Monkey Time My pal isn’t alone. Half of all Americans report sleep…

entered on 11/17/14 at 02:07 PM | read more »

A Fierce Wind Was Blowing

And the screens we're a rattling

entered on 11/10/14 at 10:23 PM | read more »

Winners and Losers

Ahh, democracy. Every few months, we as a nation demonstrate our collective intelligence, proving there’s a reason why great thinkers from Plato to Voltaire and through the ages said that democracy, as a form of government, is not the best choice. Critics maintain it’s a form of organized mob rule. Some say it’s just a clever cover for corporatocracy. Certainly it’s hard to deny that our country is run as an oligarchy, especially when the acknowledged presidential frontrunner from the Republican Party in 2016 is the third Bush out of Texas — and his opponent is likely a second Clinton. Yet many of us go mark ballots in a perversion of a poll dance but with clothes on.

Often the…

entered on 11/10/14 at 05:24 PM | read more »

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Bo Pelini behaved as if he had coached his last game at Nebraska, based on his sideline and post-game decorum, or lack thereof. That was the...

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Attention to detail

If not for Sam Burtch, the most dramatic play of this Nebraska football season might never have happened.

If not for Burtch, Ron Kellogg III...

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Sack leader

As David Santos remembers it, Connor Cook was rolling out and he was pursuing the Michigan State quarterback when Nebraska teammate Randy Gregory...

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Planet Power: Nov. 21 - 27, 2013

Happy Thanksgiving. Let’s be nice to each other and cultivate warm thoughts. You are what you think…


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Planet Power: Nov. 14 - 20, 2013

This issue marks my 17th year here at The “READER.” Thanks to John, Eric, my beloved Carrie, et al., for all your help, encouragement and...

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Planet Power: November 7 - 13, 2013

The new Aquarian-Age astrology is/will be ruled by the planet Uranus (yeah, I’ve heard that joke before). Traditional astrology, prior to the...

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Planet Power: Oct. 31 - Nov. 6, 2013

Happy Halloween! Let your subconscious desires flow as the twilight fades into the black of the night of the year. Don’t fear the night. You have...

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Weathering the Storm

While slogging through the depths of a wintry cold spell, it pays to consider how weather affects our wellness. It’s not just a case of getting...

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Kiss Your Asteroid Goodbye - Is Gaia Out of Gas?

There is nothing more holistic than viewing mankind as an integral part of the whole Earth. In a recent essay, Noam Chomsky wonders if we are at the...

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Predictions 2015: Into the Looking Glass

Consider my predicament. Since inception, Heartland Healing’s been reminding readers of alternatives to Western techno-pharmaceutical medicine. But...

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Sick Because You Want to Be

It sounds cold and harsh, but in all likelihood you’ll die of a disease caused by your own doing. In 1900, most people died of a disease caught from...

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