Where we get fit and spin (wool)

Paul Harvey used to say that every week. “The rest of the story” was often an amazing twist, or possibly a subtle one, giving us a different perspective on things. Well, here is “the rest of the story” on a few articles I ran across this morning.

“Don’t use aspirin to prevent heart disease, FDA warns”

This story sounds ominous, and makes it sound like the research has changed, but it’s very misleading. First, Bayer wanted to change its packaging to say it prevents heart attacks, and the FDA nixed that. Second, according to the article, it was their regular strength aspirin, which isn’t what you would use preventively anyway. Third, the FDA stated the risk of bleeding was too great, which is a captain obvious moment for anyone who knows how aspirin prevents heart attacks. No, we don’t want the general public scarfing down aspirin to prevent heart attacks. Self medication is often a bad idea, especially if people have no idea about dosages and side effects. However, a baby aspirin taken on a daily basis, which is less than a third of the amount in regular aspirin, is often prescribed to prevent heart disease.

“The One Diet that Just Keeps Proving Itself”

This article isn’t bad, just incomplete. I’d be a  fan of the mediterranean diet, if you could tell me what it was. My problem with it is that it is difficult to pin down. In this article from the AHA, they point out the obvious, that mediterranean cultures vary, and many don’t eat the “mediterranian diet” that is often espoused here in America. Oldways, an American entity. is actually the source for the diet as we know it.

“Oldways, the Harvard School of Public Health, and the European Office of the World Health Organization introduced the classic Mediterranean Diet in 1993 at a conference in Cambridge, MA, along with a Mediterranean Diet Pyramid graphic to represent it visually.”

I have no problem with the Oldways version. I don’t think it’s any different than any other diet that emphasises eating whole, unprocessed food, heavy on the fruits and veggies, which is how we should all be eating. The Dash diet is just as good, and I like South Beach as well. They all say the same things, lots of vegetables and fruit, lesser amounts of whole grains, still smaller amounts of protein, with an emphasis on fish, chicken and plant sources of protein, and still less of anything else.

“Struggling to Eat Healthy? Keep These Low-Cal, Heavy-Value Options Around”

This one is just another “list article“, which I have to admit, I do enjoy. I included it to make the point that healthy eating doesn’t have to be difficult or expensive. Most of the healthiest foods are very cheap. I eat beans and rice every week, and dried beans are still about $1.20 a pound. Cooked, that would make three weeks of meals for me. Before you say “oh, that’s too much work”, while you are cooking dinner, put some beans in a microwave safe dish, with plenty of water, so they are well covered. Nuke them for about three minutes. Leave them while you eat and clean up. Before bed, drain them, put them in your crock pot with more water to cover, and cook them on low overnight. In the morning, you are set. You can add spices and seasonings to the beans if you know what you want them to taste like. The last batch I did, I was cooking soup bones, I added the beans, cooked them for about four hours, fished them and some of the meat out, added vegetables and barley, cooked that for another two hours and got two different meals from the same soup bones. Very little meat, yet both dishes have a great meaty flavor. Get a rice cooker and you are all set. Especially if you are like me and get distracted so you burn the rice.

So that’s my take on the news this week. Remember, most news articles have a “rest of the story”, so don’t take what you read at face value. Ask yourself, “How does this fit in with what I already know? What aren’t they telling me?”


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