Elegant Living

Nutritious, Versatile Pumpkin Seeds

Pumpkin Seeds are great freshly-ground and used as a salad-topper. Here is a salad topped with both ground raw pumpkin seeds, Cheddar cheese and walnuts.

 “Pepitas”, as they are called in Spanish, are delicious when toasted in a pan with a teaspoon of coconut oil and about a half-teaspoon of salt per cup. Stirred frequently with a wooden spoon, my pumpkin seeds were ready after ten minutes in a medium-hot cast-iron pan. Another method is soaking the seeds overnight in water, lemon juice and salt, draining and toasting them in a moderate oven.
Pumpkin seeds are a rich source of zinc, iron, magnesium, omega-3s, are low in carbs, and three tablespoons of them contain eight grams of protein. Pumpkin seeds have properties that are used in an efficacious treatment for parasites. Storing ground pumpkin seeds in the refrigerator in a jar will preserve their freshness.
From George Mateljan’s venerable website, “World’s Healthiest Foods”, here is the first paragraph of, and a link tohis article about Pumpkin Seeds:

Antioxidant Support

While antioxidant nutrients are found in most WHFoods, it’s the diversity of antioxidants in pumpkin seeds that makes them unique in their antioxidant support. Pumpkin seeds contain conventional antioxidant vitamins like vitamin E. However, not only do they contain vitamin E, but they contain it in a wide variety of forms. Alpha-tocopherol, gamma-tocopherol, delta-tocopherol, alpha-tocomonoenol and gamma-tocomonoenol are all forms of vitamin E found in pumpkin seeds. These last two forms have only recently been discovered, and they are a topic of special interest in vitamin E research, since their bioavailability might be greater than some of the other vitamin E forms. Pumpkin seeds also contain conventional mineral antioxidants like zinc and manganese. Phenolic antioxidants are found in pumpkin seeds in a wide variety of forms, including the phenolic acids hydroxybenzoic, caffeic, coumaric, ferulic, sinapic, protocatechuic, vanillic, and syringic acid. Antioxidant phytonutrients like lignans are also found in pumpkin seeds, including the lignans pinoresinol, medioresinol, and lariciresinol.
Interestingly, this diverse mixture of antioxidants in pumpkin seeds may provide them with antioxidant-related properties that are not widely found in food. For example, the pro-oxidant enzyme lipoxygenase (LOX) is known to be inhibited by pumpkin seed extracts, but not due to the presence of any single family of antioxidant nutrients (for example, the phenolic acids described earlier). Instead, the unique diversity of antioxidants in pumpkin seeds is most likely responsible for this effect.
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M-J’s Nutritious Luncheon Pancakes Made with Magical Mung Beans

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M-J’s High-Protein Mung Bean Pancakes, Filled with Strained Yoghurt (“Labneh”)

My husband Jacques likens this dish to blini with caviar and sour cream. To some, that’s quite an endorsement (I’ve resisted caviar all my life, with every fiber of my being).

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I call mung beans “magical” because they are full of life, often sprouting while being boiled.

M-J’s HIGH-PROTEIN MUNG BEAN PANCAKES

To my pot of cooked mung beans (one cup dry beans, three cups water) I add chia seeds (while beans are still hot, to make them soft), yogurt whey*, whole oat flour (I grind my own), ground flax, hemp protein powder, a couple of raw eggs, and a little self-rising flour. I keep the batter pretty thin, adding more liquid whey or water when required. Ingredients are pictured below, but I don’t use measurements. ~M-J

Read Dr. Axe’s information on the Mung Bean Nutritional Powerhouse.

Mung_Bean_Pancake_Ingredients

Save the Whey from Yogurt

I save liquid whey from the yogurt-straining process, and mix a little nonfat dry milk with it in a blender-bottle. I refrigerate the stuff to use in smoothies or pancake batter~M-J

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M-J’s High-Protein Pancakes: You Can See the Mung Beans in the Batter

Make yogurt whey* to use as liquid for pancake batter by straining your yogurt to make it thicker. Pour the liquid (whey) that has been removed from your yogurt into a jar for use in smoothies and pancake batter. Then use the resultant “Greek yogurt” to spread onto the pancakes. After spreading this on my mung bean pancakes, I roll them to create a delicious, health-promoting luncheon dish.

*See my jar of whey in the following picture:

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I use Karoun Plain Yogurt from California to make “Greek yogurt”, or labneh, and yogurt cheese. It is truly all-natural and makes all other American yogurt brands look weak. ©M-J de Mesterton 2018
Frozen High-Protein Pancakes
M-J’s Original Recipe High-Protein Pancakes are Cooked in Bulk, Cooled, Stacked and Separated with Pieces of Waxed Paper, then Frozen for Easy Meal Preparation
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M-J’s Original Recipe High-Protein Mung Bean Pancakes are Easy to Reheat, Fill and Roll
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M-J’s Sweet or Savoury Coconut Flour Pancakes

My recipe for coconut flour pancakes can be adjusted to your taste. I sometimes add a few drops of Mapleine, which is in the spice section of the market, together with vanilla extract. For fewer carbohydrates per pancake, unsweetened almond milk is ideal to use rather than buttermilk. When making a savoury version, I usually serve sour cream on the side, perfect for a low-carb regimen.

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M-J’s Elegant Southwestern Salad

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M-J’s low-carb southwestern-style salad starts with warm sautéed ground beef, onion and celery that has been flavored with chile powder or taco seasoning, which is topped with shredded cheddar cheese, finely-chopped romaine lettuce, tomato-chunks, dots of sour cream and green salsa. The ingredients in this individual salad are arranged elegantly and are only mixed together by the person to whom it is served. Bowls of additional sour cream and salsa can be available at your table, as well as strips or chunks of avocado doused with lemon or lime to prevent turning brown. Eating hot salsa can raise one’s resistance to colds and flu, which are no longer just seasonal. Hot peppers such as cayenne, jalapeño and serrano also enhance one’s metabolism. Ground beef can be substituted with grilled chicken, and for the chile-pepper enthusiast, strips of broiled serranos can be artfully placed on the lettuce. This hearty salad is a good source of protein and health-promoting produce any time of year.

©M-J de Mesterton 2017

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Deep-Fried Gyoza

gyoza_deep-fried_copyright_m-jeanne_de_mesterton_elegant_cookGyoza skins were filled with health-promoting ingredients: purple cabbage, cooked adzuki beans, celery, carrot, red onion, cooked brown rice, chopped umeboshi plums and miso; I sealed them with an egg-wash and then the gyoza dumplings were deep-fried in peanut oil and drained on paper towels. I served half of these and froze the rest (it’s the only way to keep them; storing these deep-fried pockets of finely minced vegetables, legumes and rice in the fridge will make them too soft). The frozen “gyozas” will be spread in a single layer and reheated in a hot oven. @M-J de Mesterton 2017

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Wellness Update

Stay in Good Health: Cover Up Your Skin This Summer, Use Natural Antibiotics Such as Oil of Oregano and an Olive Leaf Supplement, and Eat Your Vegetables~~M-J
Recommended Actions and Anti-Viral Foods to Stay in Good Health: Cover Up Your Skin This Summer, Use Natural Antibiotics Such as Raw Ginger, Hot Peppers, Oil of Oregano and an Olive Leaf Supplement, then Eat Your Vegetables~~M-J

With ill people travelling ’round the U.S. and internationally on buses or airplanes, you would be wise to wear gloves and even surgical masks while flying. Carry oil of oregano for surface and interior infections, and take olive leaf capsules daily–both of these are natural antibiotics, to which the human race has not developed a resistance. This alert is relevant indefinitely, because adequate measures are not being taken to mitigate these modern-day plagues (click here to view a Natural News article explaining how the authorities are actually doing the opposite). MRSA (a flesh-eating virus) is on the rise, as are antibiotic-resistant tuberculosis, rubella/measles, chickenpox/shingles, mites, lice, swine flu, ebola, pertussis/whooping cough and MERS (a deadly respiratory infection). It is better to be safe than sorry, and wearing gloves is just one essential component of dressing in the traditional manner (chic people like Cary Grant and Audrey Hepburn didn’t go out without gloves).  Also, intelligent fellow-passengers will understand when you protect yourself by wearing a surgical mask on a plane, where pathogen-laced air is recycled and breathed by everyone, causing what are known as community-acquired diseases.  If some rubes give you odd looks or make ignorant wise-cracks,  just remember that their cavalier attitude may put them out of their misery and that you will likely be the elegant survivor.  Stay healthy and look great doing it.  Many of these current scourges are incurable….

@M-J de Mesterton, Elegant Survival News 2014

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Elegant Cayenne Pepper Plant

Elegant Cayenne Pepper Plant
Cayenne Pepper: a Health-Promoting Fruit, Used for Spicing Many Dishes

The Health Benefits of Cayenne Peppers, at George Mateljan’s World’s Healthiest Foods

Capsaicin-Rich Cayenne Peppers are a Heart-Tonic and Anti-Inflammatory Fruit
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Correcting Forward Head Posture

Health and Happiness
Health and Happiness

Forward head posture is when one leads with his/her head. This can develop when sitting at a desk or driving in a slumped, head-first position. Forward posture can significantly increase the weight-load on your neck, screw up your spine, and affect adversely the workings of your insides. I listened to a radio show about the problem, in which chiropractors discuss its side-effects and how to treat it. A chiropractic solution is bound to be expensive and out-of-reach for many people. Here is a video on Head-Forward Posture by Dr. Natalie Cordova that may be helpful, even if you don’t actually have the affliction yet.

~~Copyright M-J de Mesterton, April 2009

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Bath and Shower Safety

After our traditional bath-mat by a famous rubber product company let us down–or, rather, practically threw us against the shower wall in two near-fatal falls, we’ve thrown it away and done some shopping. We found a reliable, technologically advanced bath-mat at Wal-Mart. It is a thing of beauty, and holds fast to the bottom of the bath-tub. A weak bath-mat can send you flying to an early fate. I know a rubber product company whose reputation ought to be slipping! This was a shocking revelation, and we consider ourselves lucky to be alive, having dodged a couple of dangerous accidents.

Here is the product offered on Wal-Mart.com. An analogous mat can be found inside Wal-Mart stores, called “Heavy Duty Bath Mat”, Commercial Grade Vinyl

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An Apple a Day Just Might Keep the Doctor Away!

Apples, because of their pectin, polyphenols and bioflavonoids, have properties that really can, like the old adage says, keep the doctor away.

In 1996, a study was conducted in Finland to determine whether or not eating apples can lower cholesterol. The Finnish team determined that eating three apples a day for three months can help lower a person’s LDL, or low-density lipoprotein (bad cholesterol) level by twenty points. Apples contain quercetin, an antioxidant which also helps to reduce the amount of LDL in the bloodstream.

Another Finnish study’s results promote the theory that the polyphenols in apples can inhibit lung cancer.

Apples, having natural ACE-inhibitor  properties, can help to  relax arteries, lower blood pressure and improve the pumping ability of the heart. The apple is also a hemetic, an agent that builds up the blood.

Eating apples can reduce the incidence of cardiovascular disease. The well-known Women’s Health Study found that  females who regularly ate foods  high in flavonoids, such as apples and onions, had a 35% reduction in cardiovascular events. The Finnish study found a lower risk of thrombic stroke among those who eat apples often. The study concluded that “flavonoid intake was strongly correlated with a decreased mortality from heart disease in elderly men and also negatively correlated with myocardial infarction.”

The Finnish research team proved that the apple’s bioflavonoids have an effect on cerebrovascular health.  Apples provide antioxidants for the body. Oxidative damage on cells by free radicals contributes to age-related brain deterioration. Alzheimer’s Disease and dementia are examples. The apple is an anti-Alzheimer’s agent. A study conducted by the University of Massachusetts suggests that whether the brain-oxidation is caused by genetics,  metabolism, or dietary insufficiencies, apples can improve the condition.

The apple can help to prevent sugar alcohol, or sorbitol, from being trapped in nerve and eye cells. Apples contain a natural aldose-reductase inhibitor, which can help to prevent this devastating effect of diabetes.

Apples are a digestive aid, and help to prevent the absorption of fats.

The health-benefits of apples are numerous, and autumn is harvest time.

Copyright M-J de Mesterton, 2008

More Information on the Apple’s Health-Benefits, by George Mateljan, My Favorite Food and Health Writer

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High Heel Injuries Very Costly in Great Britain

I found this in yahoo! News UK today. It didn’t show an author.

High heels are costing the nation £29 million a year through injuries to feet, according to new figures.

Operations and medical procedures to correct damaged feet can cost sufferers thousands of pounds a time.

Bunion removal due to wearing high heels too frequently can cost £4,000 a time and £10.5 million is spent on this procedure each year.

Toe straightening, the most common procedure, can cost £1,200 each time and £10.4 million is spent on this every 12 months.

Big toe joint replacement is also costly at £4,000 a time, adding up to £3.3 million over a year.

Corns account for 12 per cent of high heel injuries, and with treatment costing £800 a time, this costs the nation £2.9 million per year.

Removal of trapped nerves can cost £2,000 to carry out, amounting to £2 million a year, while ingrowing toenails cost £250 to treat and £200,000 is spent on this every 12 months.

The study of 1,000 women, funded by shoe company MBT, found that those living in Liverpool and Manchester were most likely to suffer from wearing heels, with 45 per cent wearing them every day.

It also found that 42 per cent of the women surveyed reported having some kind of accident in their heels, with twisted ankles and falling over the most common mishaps.

Emma Supple, consultant podiatrist for the MBT Academy, said: “While we all love our high heels, wearing them for prolonged periods is bad news for our health and our wallets.

“We need to mix and match our choice of footwear to allow our bodies time to recover.”

She urged women to consider a more balanced “diet” of shoe wear.

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Check It and Chuck It

Maintaining the Flower of Youth

Look at the labels on your makeup products. If they are “made in China”, they are likely to contain lead, which is a carcinogen.

Check all makeup, lotion, and deodorant products for the ingredient, “aluminum”. Aluminum is known to cause a breach in the blood-brain barrier, an anomaly to which Alzheimer’s disease is attributed.
A well-preserved blood-brain barrier is required to protect brain cells from being damaged by neurotoxins, which accumulate and poison brain cells.

Another source of aluminum is the non-dairy creamer, Coffee-Mate. I found the Canadian version to be aluminum-free, however. Check the labels on all such products before buying. Some of the less-expensive store brands of non-dairy creamer, such as Wal-Mart and Sam’s, are free of aluminum additives (I think they are called flow-agents).

If a product contains one or both of the aforementioned ingredients, chuck it!

~~Copyright M-J de Mesterton, 2008

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Your Health and Hotels

Don’t drink from hotel room glasses, unless you wash them properly first.
Here is a must-see video on dangerously sloppy maid service in hotels.

When my husband and I absolutely must stay in a hotel, we always pack lightweight slippers to avoid contact with the floors, and we also protect ourselves from guest-bed pillows by putting a thin, 13-gallon plastic bag over the pillow, and placing our own pillow cases over that impermeable layer. With that procedure, we lessen our chances of catching airborne, breathable pathogens.

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The Merits of Wearing Gloves

I posted something about wearing gloves in December, 2006. Somehow, after many months, and while rearranging my material, the piece has gone missing. I had worn kid gloves to an evening holiday party, and my husband wore gloves as well. A young lady commented favourably on our style. I spoke briefly about the merits of wearing gloves, expressing the hope that it would again become routine. I mentioned the scourge of staphylococcus aureus, whereupon she held up her hand with its missing finger–lost to the superbug!
For years, I was regarded as an oddball simply for wearing driving gloves. I also wore gloves at the supermarket to ward-off transference of germs on carts, et cetera*. I’ve read somewhere recently that glove-wearing is back in style. I hope that’s true.
M-Jeanne September 11th, 2007
*I also wash every grocery item which enters our house.