Deep-Fried Stuffed Cactus Paddles By: Cindy Kennedy

The edible prickly pear nopal “stems,” known more widely as cactus paddles, pads, or nopales, are a centuries-old Mexican staple. This thorny plant was central to the Aztec tale of Tenochtitlan, which translates to “place of the cactus.” Today, that special place is Mexico City. Mexico’s coat of arms depicts this historical perspective with an eagle perched on a cactus and devouring a snake. In Texas, cactus is also the official state plant.

While the paddles look more like leaves, they’re actually stems (pencas) growing from the main stalk. Fruit (tuna), which is also an edible treat, sprouts from the pads. Because it is so easily grown in desert climates, you’ll find cactus a popular choice on New Mexican menus, too.

Of course, the Mayans and Aztecs were quite ingenious in finding medicinal and household uses for this plant. In the past, it has found its way into anti-inflammatory remedies and waterproof roofing protectant. Its edible parts contain high amounts of fiber along with an impressive list of minerals and vitamins. This combination of properties is proving to be effective in lowering cholesterol and blood pressure. Testing continues to prove its beneficial properties help reduce blood sugar levels for diabetes treatment.

Among the many nopal recipes, you’ll find egg dishes, relishes, and soups along with our classic stuffed paddles that are deep-fried to a golden brown. When nopales are sliced or chopped, they’re called nopalitos. Taste-wise, think of an extra-mild green bean. If you’re lucky, you’ll find paddles that are cleaned, but more likely you’ll have to remove the thorns, along with smaller hair-like spikes.

As you work, the cactus will begin to seep a slimy sap, similar to okra. Most of it will blanch and rinse off before cooking. The filling for deep-fried cactus paddles includes jack cheese, onions and jalapenos. Use a classic fry batter of your choice. Plan on a single paddle for each person, if you’re serving it with – or as – a side dish.

Deep-Fried Stuffed Cactus Paddles
Makes 6 servings

6 cactus paddles
1/2 onion, sliced

READ MORE:  https://hispanickitchen.com/2010/10/04/deep-fried-stuffed-cactus-paddles/

 

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10 All-Natural DIY Fertilizers for Your Garden and Yard By Bruce and Jeanne Lubin

You’ve probably heard that you can use a banana peel and other compost to fertilize your garden, but did you know some items—like gelatin, coffee grounds, and even a matchbook—can have specific benefits for your plants?

gardening

Hydrogen Peroxide for Plant Roots

Help strengthen your plant’s root system with hydrogen peroxide—the extra pump of oxygen from the peroxide prevents root rot and over-watering. Just mix a tablespoon of hydrogen peroxide with 2 cups water, and water your plant with the solution. Its disinfectant properties will fend off bacteria, mold, fungus, and other nasty soil-borne diseases.

Cereal Crumb Fertilizer

Did you know that cereal crumbs are great for plants? They supply much-needed nutrients to the soil, which makes sense given that they’re grains that came from the soil in the first place! Instead of shaking the box over the trash before ripping it up for recycling, dump the remains of the flakes into your houseplants or garden for a treat they’ll love.

Make Your Own Bonemeal

As you may know, bonemeal is an excellent source of nutrients for your plants. But instead of spending $8–$10 on a bag at your local gardening store, make your own! Bonemeal is just bones, after all. Save bones from chicken, turkey, steaks, and stews, then dry them out by roasting them in a 425ºF oven for a half an hour or microwaving them on high for 1–6 minutes (depending on how many bones you have). Then place them in a plastic or paper bag and grind them up by hitting them with a hammer, then rolling them with a rolling pin. Mix the resulting powder into your soil for a life-producing treat for your plants. And you didn’t spend a cent!

A Must-Have for Growing Carrots and Tomatoes

The best thing you can give your carrot and tomato plant seeds is also what keeps you going during the day—coffee! Carrots and tomatoes both need extra nitrogen, which coffee has in spades. Mix the seeds with coffee grounds (used is fine) before you plant them. The coffee will provide your growing plants with the nitrogen they need, while having some extra bulk to plant will ensure they don’t end up all lumped together.

Slow-Release Nitrogen

For plants other than carrots and tomatoes, extra nitrogen can give them a boost, but too much can harm them. So use this nitrogen-rich DIY fertilizer that releases the nitrogen slowly into the ground. Dissolve a packet of unflavored gelatin in 3 cups warm water. Then use it to water plants in need of a little TLC. You’ll get all the benefits of an expensive fertilizer without the price tag!

Epsom Salt Lawn Fertilizer

Did you know Epsom salts are one of the best natural lawn fertilizers around? They’re composed of magnesium and sulfur, both of which are highly beneficial to grass. Magnesium kick-starts seed germination and is also a player in manufacturing chlorophyll, the substance that plants create from sunlight in order to feed themselves. Sulfur, meanwhile, also helps with

READ MORE:  https://www.quickanddirtytips.com/house-home/housekeeping/gardening/10-all-natural-diy-fertilizers-for-your-garden-and-yard

 

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Yoni Steaming: What Is Yoni Steaming, When To Yoni Steam, Yoni Steaming Contraindications By: Adena Rose Bright

Yoni steaming, also called simply vaginal steaming, is a treatment that employs steam from a hot herbal tea mixture that is directed onto the vaginal area. It can easily be done at home on a special stool, or even just a slatted chair, by sitting over a steaming pot of herbs.

So many modern women are yearning for a mystical and magical healing experience. The closest thing to this may just be the yoni steam.

Yoni steaming has been touted to be a cure-all for women’s reproductive issues including infertility, fibroids, and painful menstrual cycles. There is much truth to this, for when the medicinal properties from the herbs blend with the heat from the steam, circulation and blood flow is improved. This balances coldness and stagnation within the vaginal area, which are often to blame for many of these problems.

Yoni Steaming And Ancient Medicine

Yoni steaming is talked about a lot in Mayan medicine. In Ayurveda, the ancient natural medicine of India, a practitioner looks for the qualities in someone’s imbalance, and aims to treat the client with the opposite qualities. This means that anything can become medicine, remain neutral, or be considered poisonous depending on those qualities one is trying to balance.

From the Ayurvedic perspective, steam has the qualities of being hot, subtle, and spreading. These are mostly qualities that we see in Pitta dosha. The herbs you use in the steam can change the qualities slightly, yet overall this is the energy of the treatment.

A Vata or Kapha dosha imbalance, can greatly benefit from this hot and moist treatment because the qualities of cold, slow, dull, or hard may be present. It is a rule in Eastern medicine that if there is pain, there is stagnation, so a warming, moving treatment like this would be indicated. Alternatively, if there is an infection, or already too much heat or itching, like seen with Pitta imbalance, yoni steaming would most-likely be contraindicated, though other natural treatments can certainly be useful.

There may seem to be infinite benefits to yoni steaming, but there are contraindications. It is important to find support to learn how to use this technique correctly. With proper guidance, this is a simple practice to use at home for self care and deep healing.

When You Should Not Steam: Yoni Steaming Contraindications

Time and circumstance plays an important part in when to yoni steam. And just as their are appropriate times to steam, there are definite yoni steaming contraindications.

One of the biggest contraindications for yoni steaming is an intrauterine device, or IUD. Vaginal steaming is not recommended if a woman is using an

READ MORE:  https://www.theayurvedaexperience.com/blog/yoni-steaming/

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21 Vegan Desserts That Ditch the Dairy but Not the Flavor by Anisha Jhaveri

No matter how much more popular veganism is becoming these days, some people can’t shake the perception that all egg- and dairy-free desserts must taste like flavorless slabs of sandpaper. Clearly, these people have never tried any of these 100 percent vegan recipes.

The cookies in this roundup don’t contain butter, the pies have no eggs, and you won’t find cream cheese frosting anywhere near the cupcakes, but thanks to a few simple yet clever swaps, they’re all delicious examples of how a purely plant-based diet can translate to some pretty mind-blowing sweet treats. So don’t let the vegan label throw you off; any of these 21 vegan desserts would steal the show at the table.

Cookies and Bars

You’ll go (coco)nuts for these rich, soft chocolate-covered bars made with just four ingredients and in a grand total of six little minutes. With coconut oil, unsweetened coconut, and maple syrup, they’re just like Almond Joy bars, but healthier and even more addictive.

These fudgy treats taste just like something out of a Betty Crocker brownie mix, but we bet good ol’ Betty never thought to put

READ MORE:  https://greatist.com/eat/vegan-desserts

 

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More Than 90 Percent of Americans Have Pesticides or Their Byproducts in Their Bodies By Liza Gross

The real risks from chemicals in our food—for farmworkers and children, in particular—are being ignored.

pesticide-spraying-california-otu-img

Produced with FERN, non-profit reporting on food, agriculture, and environmental health.This story was produced by the Food & Environment Reporting Network, an independent nonprofit news organization.

very year US farmers use about a billion pounds of chemicals on crops, including the fruits, nuts, and vegetables many parents beg their kids to eat. The Department of Agriculture and the Food and Drug Administration are charged with ensuring that these chemicals don’t endanger consumers, and both agencies test the food supply for pesticide residues each year. They focus on foods eaten by babies and children, whose developing bodies are particularly sensitive to toxic chemicals, and typically report that pesticide residues in these products rarely exceed safety standards.

Yet, experts say, the agencies’ pesticide-monitoring approach suffers from several limitations that make it difficult to draw meaningful conclusions about pesticide risks to the nation’s food supply. What’s more, government agencies don’t monitor risks to farmworkers who labor among those chemicals, or to pregnant women and children who live near agricultural fields.

Since pesticide monitoring began about three decades ago, scientists have learned that even low doses of pesticides and other synthetic chemicals can harm children and that exposure to chemical mixtures, particularly during critical windows of neurodevelopment, may carry serious health risks that take years to emerge. And though crops are often sprayed with multiple chemicals over the growing season, both agencies track pesticide residues one chemical at a time, to determine whether a specific chemical exceeds safety standards set by the Environmental Protection Agency.

READ MORE:  https://www.thenation.com/article/pesticides-farmworkers-agriculture/

 

 

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Fluoride As a Neurotoxin: 9 Ways It Harms Your Brain Created by Deane Alban

woman looks surprised at a glass of water

Fluoride is a trace mineral that, in sufficient quantity, is harmful to mental health. Consider these reasons to avoid fluoridated water and toothpaste.

1. Fluoride Is a Developmental Neurotoxin

A neurotoxin is a substance that’s poisonous or destructive to the tissues in the brain, spinal cord, and nervous system.

A developmental neurotoxin is one that affects the brain during the most susceptible stages of life — before birth and during early childhood.

A recent study in The Lancet, one of the most prestigious and highly regarded medical journals, recommended that fluoride be classified as a developmental neurotoxin along with lead, mercury, arsenic, PCBs, and toluene. (4)

Study authors believe that there is a “pandemic of developmental neurotoxicity” and fluoride is a contributor.

Developmental neurotoxins are linked to increases in autism, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), dyslexia, loss of IQ points, disruptive behavior, and other cognitive impairments.

2. The Ingestion of Fluoride Lowers IQ in Children

Harvard School of Public Health and China Medical University did a joint analysis of 27 studies on the effects of fluoride and found a strong correlation between fluoride and adverse effects on brain development. (5)

Children in high-fluoride areas had significantly lower IQ scores than those living in low-fluoride areas.

This is not the only study that supports these findings.

To date, more than 50 human studies have linked fluoride to reduced IQ in both children and adults. (6)

3. Fluoride Facilitates the Entry of Aluminum Into the Brain

In the 1970s, autopsies revealed that Alzheimer’s patients had higher than normal concentrations of neurotoxic aluminum in their brains.

It’s now understood that fluoride may play a role in the aluminum-Alzheimer’s connection.

The blood-brain barrier is a semipermeable membrane designed to keep foreign substances — like fluoride and aluminum — out of the brain.

When aluminum comes into contact with fluoride, it hitches a ride into the brain as aluminum fluoride, bypassing the blood-brain barrier.

The presence of aluminum fluoride in the brain has been linked to Alzheimer’s. (7)

4. Fluoridated Drinking Water Doubles the Risk of Hypothyroidism

Fluoride, especially when added to drinking water,

READ MORE:  https://bebrainfit.com/fluoride-neurotoxin/

 

 

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