Elegant Survival

Stylish Living on a Shoestring
Since 2006

Home-Made Probiotic Vegetables


Click Here to Read M-J's Main Website, Elegant Survival
I processed raw purple cabbage with miso, and finely-sliced turnips with Himalayan Salt in my Japanese pickle press to make probiotic-rich vegetables. The P-Carrot Pickle Press is Made in Japan.
~~Copyright M-J de Mesterton 2014~~

Cancer-Inhibiting Compounds in Raw Vegetables

By M-J de Mesterton

Allicin is found in shallots, garlic, leeks, and all varieties of onions.
Anthocyanins are found in blue and purple fruits and berries, such as blueberries, bilberries, grapes, açai berries, black currants, plums, and mangosteen fruit.
Carotenoids exist in carrots, sweet potatoes, yams, apricots, spinach and kale.
Catechins are found in apples, berries of all varieties, green tea and other fruits of the earth.
Chlorophyll is a component of wheat grass, barley grass, chlorella and spirulina algaes, and leafy greens.
Ellagic Acid exists in grapes,  lingonberries, raspberries, blackberries and strawberries
Limonoids are health-promoting components of citrus fruits such as grapefruit, lemons, oranges, and limes. Beneficial citrus bioflavonoids are also found in these fruits.
Lycopene is found in grapefruit, watermelons; tomatoes are especially rich in this compound.
Resveratrol is a naturally-occurring compound in grapes, peanuts, and Japanese knotweed.
Sulforaphane is a component of cruciferous vegetables like broccoli, brussels sprouts, cabbage and cauliflower.

Copyright ©M-J de Mesterton

Elegant Macrobiotics
Shredded apples and finely-chopped Romaine lettuce adorn a bed of brown rice, See Elegant Cook for M-J de Mesterton's macrobiotic recipes. 



M-J's Smoothie-Boosters for a Cancer-Preventing, Liver-Detoxifying,
Health-Promoting Breakfast Drink:

Snip off a leaf of aloe vera per day and incorporate it into your morning health-drink.







November, 2012

Mung Beans (Vigna Radiata) Discourage Sepsis

Mung beans neutralise the protein HMGB1, thus protecting against constant inflammation that damages  tissue and organs. Haichao Wang, PhD, and his colleagues, including Shu Zhu, MD and PhD, and Andrew E. Sama, MD, at the Feinstein Institute for Medical Research found that extract from mung bean (Vigna Radiata) reduced the release of HMGB1, doubling survival rates in mice afflicted by sepsis from 29.4 percent to 70 percent (P < 0.05).

It has been found that a deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) protein, HMGB1, mitigates inflammation.
"Many traditional medicinal herbs have been successfully developed into effective therapies for various inflammatory ailments, and now we have validated the therapeutic potential of another medicinal product, mung bean extract," said Dr. Wang. "Demonstrating that mung bean extract has a positive effect on septic mice shows promise that this bean can also have a positive effect on septic humans - of course, additional studies are required to prove the safe and effective use in humans."

 Mung beans are tiny, oval, green bean seeds that are great for sprouting. They are used often in Chinese and Japanese cooking.



 A piece of low-carb GG Bran Crispbread (2 net carbs per slice; recommended by Dr. Atkins) is adorned with strained yogurt, cayenne pepper, Himalayan salt, and home-grown lentil sprouts.
©M-J de Mesterton 2012



M-J's Low-Carb Almond Cookies

 M-J's Almond Cookies are low in carbohydrates, and high in protein. 
Mix together in a large bowl:
Ground Almonds, 2 cups
1 tablespoon of flour
Almond or Peanut Butter, three tablespoons
Egg Whites, 2
Pomegranate Juice or water, 1/4 cup
Ground Flax-Seed, 1/4 cup
One tablespoon of coconut oil
Splenda or Stevia, 1/2 cup or to-taste
Baking Powder, 1 teaspoon
Ginger, 1 teaspoon
Cinnamon, 1 teaspoon
Shape dough into balls and flatten them on an un-greased cookie sheet, and bake in moderately hot oven. Watch cookies carefully; they will brown quickly on the bottom, so it may be necessary to move them to a higher oven rack during the last few minutes of baking.
©M-J de Mesterton 2012

Elegant Orange Vegetable Smoothie, a Morning Tonic 

One carrot, two yellow Cubanelle peppers, a quarter of a lemon, peel and pulp included; two celery stalks, five radishes, and a cup of buttermilk whirled together in a blender or food-processor make an elegant morning smoothie. This particular concoction is loaded with vitamins A and C.  

©M-J de Mesterton 2011 



M-J de Mesterton

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Posted on April 10, 2014 at 12:05 PM

Since 2006, I have been writing about the benefits of wearing gloves. Now, there is more justification than ever for my admonitions and recommendations on the topic. Currently plaguing Americans and the rest of the world are norovirus and MRSA; the deadly ebola virus is rampant in Africa, and other antibiotic-resistant diseases are proliferating. Most of these viruses are spread by surface-contact. Wearing gloves while out in public, especially while shopping, and disinfecting them when you get home can save your life. And hospital-acquired diseases are now common, so do your best to avoid hospitals and other heath-clinics. 


Hospital-acquired infections can be caused by viruses, bacteria, fungi or parasites; they are spread by touching contaminated surfaces, clothing and implements, or skin-contact with infected people. Viruses may be contracted from surgical procedures, catheters, or by inhaling airborne pathogens.

Common hospital infections are MRSA (methicillin-resistant staphylococcus aureus) and C Difficile.These micro-organisms may already exist dormantly in the patient's body or be contracted from the air, contaminated surfaces and hospital equipment, healthcare workers or other patients. Hospitals must employ pre-screening for MRSA or C-Difficile prior to surgery.

These infections and viruses are often resistant to antibiotics, and the lack of effective therapies may necessitate amputation of fingers or limbs. If you find yourself having to be in the hospital as a patient or visitor, wear disposable gloves before touching any surface, tool, item of clothing or person.

Relying on antibacterial gels and liquids is no longer adequate for self-protection against dangerous germs. Wearing gloves not only enhances your elegance, but will give you confidence in your safety and survival.

©M-J de Mesterton 2014 


Protect Yourself from the Elements

with Gloves, Hats and Parasols

Protect Yourself with Elegant Gloves,  Night and Day

Friday, February 1, 2008

The Merits of Wearing Gloves, and the Scourge of Staphylococcus Aureus

Staphylia: Oil on Canvas Painting 16" X 20" by M-J de Mesterton, Copyright 2006

I posted something about wearing gloves in December, 2006. Somehow, after many months, and while rearranging my material, the piece has gone missing. Here's my attempt at reconstructing it: I had worn long kid gloves to an evening holiday party, and my husband wore elegant 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-J de Mesterton September 11th, 2007
*I also wash every grocery item which enters our house.

I have been writing about this for over three years, and no doubt some people have scoffed. Eyes glaze over when this subject is mentioned, and the speaker is written-off as a germophobe.
That attitude has changed overnight. MRSA, or antibiotic-resistant Staphylococcus Aureus isn't just a hospital-acquired disease anymore. Elegant Survival's Face and Figure page alludes to the intrinsic unhealthiness of health-clubs and public gyms. The noise level of the "music" played can deafen you, and the transmission of germs and viruses on the surfaces there may sicken. However, I wanted to be a bit delicate and not graphic, so I determined to return to the topic with a well-crafted, diplomatic way of saying, "If you value your health, stay out of health-clubs!"

I belonged to three such clubs in the past, beginning with the old Henry Hudson Health Club on 57th Street in New York City. I was disgusted when, using the women's sauna, I found the panties of other members hanging up to dry in there. Being of Swedish and Finnish descent, this abuse rankled; I also knew that moisture in the sauna ("sow-nah" is the correct pronunciation) would defeat their idiotic purpose. I cleaned-off every piece of gym equipment before use, using rubbing alcohol. It has been thirteen years since I have darkened the door of one of those clubs, because the noise got louder and the germs deadlier. Now, my logic has borne out, with the major press agencies finally giving the flesh-eating disease MRSA, or antibiotic-resistant Staphylococcus Aureus (staphylia means "grapes" in Greek--the virus is shaped like a bunch of them), the attention it deserves. Human nature usually demands that someone die before a danger is recognised, but there have been more deaths from this than the AIDS virus, going unnoticed until now.

My husband and I, as I am fond of telling you, wear gloves everywhere we go, unless it is very hot weather. We keep hand-sanitizer in the car and in our bags. Consider the objects one must handle outside the home, in public--pens, products, door-handles--there's an infinite variety of things which can bear germs and viruses. If you don't like to wear gloves in public, at least use something to clean the shopping cart handle when you're marketing. Some supermarkets offer them in a dispenser near the carts.

Thoughtfulness in life, and keen awareness of our surroundings and habits, can help us survive even the most rampant modern scourge. After all, carelessness wrought by jaded arrogance has created just that: a deadly epidemic.

M-J de Mesterton, 2007
Elegant Survival: Health Maintenance


"Better to hunt in fields, for health unbought,
Than fee the doctor for a nauseous draught. The wise, for cure, on exercise depend; God never made his work for man to mend."

~~John Dryden, Epistle to John Dryden of Chesterton

How true. I worked in a Princeton company that wrote papers for the pharmaceutical industry. I read a lot of papers by scientists and physicians about diseases and what they euphemistically call "therapies"--drugs. Not only were the maladies frightening to read about, but some of the remedies and their side-effects were horrifying! I'll write about treatments that I have seen and used for common ailments, in hopes that we who take personal health into our own hands can ward off participation in a socialist-scheme! I'll be adding to this chapter regularly, so have a look for updates.
Copyright M-J de Mesterton; November, 2006 


Vitamin D-3, in a doses of 1000 mg daily is not only immune-enhancing, but may act as an anti-viral substance against influenza of all types. Other anti-viral supplements include olive leaf, St. John's wort, cat's claw or una del gato, lemon balm, the herb lomatium dissectum, and Vitamin C.


New! Book Recommendation: Doctor Yourself, by Andrew Saul, M.D., PhD.

Earth Clinic Folk Remedies 

Don't Drink from Hotel Room Glasses without First Washing Them Yourself

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 stepping on 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.

Article in Forbes Magazine

UPDATE, January 5th: low-energy, coiled light bulbs (we use them in our house) contain a tiny bit of mercury, so take care that you don't drop them. Be careful when disposing of them (they're supposed to last five years, so I haven't done that yet). I saw the news on the BBC site, and if I can retrieve the article, I shall post a link to it here.

We've been using these for years. They may not save your life, but can really make the air that you breathe more salutory: Personal Air-Purifier

Make your own eye-pillows from soothing chamomile and lavender. This site will tell you how:

Get Enough Sleep
Our bodies produce the hormone melatonin while we sleep. Melatonin decreases the production of estrogen, the female hormone linked to breast cancer, and may be involved in other cancers as well. Sleep in total darkness. Exposure to any light while you slumber suppresses melatonin secretion.

Your body is a temple. Make sure that it's not the Temple of Doom! ~~M-J de Mesterton, copyright 2006

UPDATE, 27th August, 2007:
In May, I wrote about the dangers of eating fish. I'd like to recommend a good substitute for fish-oil: flaxseed oil. It contains omega-3 fatty acids. So do walnuts, which taste marvellous when raw and full of natural nutrients.
June 5, 2007 Health Alert: Soda Pop Ingredient
Research from a British university suggests that sodium benzoate, a common preservative found in many soft drinks, has the ability to switch off vital parts of DNA. This could eventually lead to diseases such as cirrhosis of the liver and Parkinson's. When a UK professor of molecular biology and biotechnology tested the impact of sodium benzoate on living yeast cells, he discovered that it was damaging important DNA in the cells' mitochondria. Mitochondria serve as the "power stations" for cells, and damage to them can lead to serious cell malfunctions associated with aging and age-related disease. The damage caused by sodium benzoate was great enough to cause the mitochondria to stop functioning. Sodium benzoate occurs naturally in berries in small amounts, but is used in large quantities to prevent mold in soft drinks such as Sprite, Diet Pepsi, Coca-Cola, and Dr Pepper. It is also added to pickles and sauces.
Professor Peter Piper of Sheffield University, the molecular biologist who discovered the problem, says that the soft drink preservative can "totally inactivate" and "knock out" cells' mitochondria. The end result is an increased risk of many life-threatening diseases. Sodium benzoate has previously been condemned by scientists because, when combined with the vitamin C in many soft drinks, it forms benzene, a cancer-causing chemical linked to leukemia. In one study, at least five brands of soft drinks were found to contain excessive benzene levels. Sodium benzoate is used freely in the United States and the UK.

May 30th, 2007 Health Alert: Fish and Seafood

China is exporting fish and seafood which has been raised in raw sewage. This is a great threat, since purveyors of fish and seafood world-round are selling products of unadvertised origin to both restaurants and individuals. In the interest of profit, they will deal fish from the cheapest sources. By the time it reaches the fish case in your market, or your plate in even the best restaurants, those along the fish and seafood pipeline have forgotten its provenance.
Consumption of aquaculture-bred fish is raising serious human health and food safety concerns (almost all the catfish and trout, and close to half the salmon and shrimp sold in the U.S. are raised in aquaculture facilities). Farmed fish often receive large doses of antibiotics to protect them from disease and are exposed to a variety of pesticides used to kill parasites and body fungi--all of which accumulate in the fish's tissues.
I've never liked fish or seafood, and have studiously avoided it. My husband has the same sentiments, and refuses to eat the stuff. We have never known anyone to get sick after eating beef, but we sure have known great numbers of people who have had serious cases of food poisoning after ingesting fish and seafood at fancy restaurants!
New Link, added here on March 10th, 2007: Blackwell Synergy Publications and Journals

UPDATE, November 15th, 2006: Evening primrose oil has helped me immensely in the prevention of hot flashes. It has also reduced the inflammation in my husband's joints. Wal-Mart has evening primrose oil in capsule form in the supplements department, for a low price.

Another book that I have used for years is Dr. James Duke's The Green Pharmacy. It's loaded with herbal and food-based remedies.
Linus Pauling Institute Nutrient Index

Cinnamon Spice Benefits Blood Sugar and Cholesterol
 Cinnamon improves glucose and lipids of people with type 2 diabetes. This is now common knowledge. Alam Khan, in the December 2003 issue of Diabetes Care, found “intake of 1, 3, or 6 g of cinnamon per day reduces serum glucose, triglycerides, LDL cholesterol, and total cholesterol in people with type 2 diabetes and suggests that the inclusion of cinnamon in the diet of people with type 2 diabetes will reduce risk factors associated with diabetes and cardiovascular diseases. The improvement in blood sugar (glucose) levels was in the range of 20 to 50 mg/dl after 20 to 60 days. Cholesterol decreased 20 to 30 mg/dl and triglycerides about 20 mg/dl in the same period." The effects seem to last for some days even after ceasing the intake of cinnamon. Several “natural” vitamins, minerals and herbs have been reported to improve blood sugars and/or cholesterol – but do not expect these to alleviate your need for a serious change in diet and lifestyle – and they include:
Food and spices: bitter melon, Gymnema Sylvestre, Korean ginseng, onions, garlic, flaxseed meal, cinnamon, cloves, bay leaves, and turmeric.
Supplements: {alpha}-lipoic acid, biotin, carnitine, vanadium, chromium, magnesium, zinc, and vitamins B3, E, and K. Source: Khan A, Safdar M, Ali Khan MM, Khattak KN, Anderson RA. Cinnamon Improves Glucose and Lipids of People with Type 2 Diabetes Diabetes Care, 2003 Dec;26(12):3215-8.

French Health Site, e-sante
Selenium Deficiency and Alzheimer's DiseaseAluminum-Free Baking Powder

Aluminum, Cellular Damage and Alzheimer's Disease

Aluminum (the British spelling is "aluminium") damages all types of tissue, and has been recognized as a culprit in the development of Alzheimer's Disease. Aluminum is a protoplasmic poison and a neurotoxin.It has no function in the human body. It has a tendency to accumulate in the brain and to a lesser extent, bones. It is less toxic than mercury, arsenic, lead or cadmium, but it is more persistent in the bloodstream. The damage is cumulative; gradually building up over time.Though you experience no symptoms at present of aluminum-poisoning, it is wise to avoid ingestion of it.
The principal symptom of aluminum- poisoning is the loss of intellectual function; forgetfulness, inability to concentrate, and in extreme cases, full blown dementia. Other anomalies caused by the ingestion of aluminum are bone softening, bone mass loss, kidney and other soft tissue damage. In large doses, it can cause heart attacks.
Aluminum-contaminated food-products and toiletries are increasingly common.
Many people on low-aluminum diets have reported a reduction in irritability and headaches,as well as improvements in memory and the ability to concentrate. Parents reported improvements in children with behavioral problems. One series of tests found that the majority of children suffering from an attention deficit disorder had much higher-than-average levels of aluminum in their hair. Many Alzheimer's Disease patients given treatment to remove aluminum from their system had an immediate reduction in the rate of mental deterioration. Feeding even small amounts of aluminum salts to lab animals results in brain tissue damage identical to that found in Alzheimer's victims (neuro-fibrillary tangles). Research using lab-rats has identified aluminum fluoride as a poisonous substance which readily penetrates the blood-brain barrier. Brain-damage resulted when they were given drinking water with only 0.5 parts-per-million in concentration.
The following additives contain aluminium compounds: E173, E520, E521, E523 E541, E545, E554, E555 E556, E559. Antacids quite often contain aluminum trisilicate as does buffered aspirin. Baking soda versus baking powder, which contains aluminum Foods containing aluminum-based additives include some dry cake mixes, pastries and croissants made from frozen dough, processed cheeses, some donuts and waffles. Some brands of muffins are riddled with aluminum E541. Powdered, non-dairy coffee-creamers are suspect as well; older brands, such as American Coffee-Mate, still contain aluminum as a flow-agent (Canadian Coffee-Mate formula contains none). A brand that I use has no aluminum: Sam's Club's own non-dairy creamer (also powdered)in large jugs. Instead of using deodorants that contain aluminum, I just use some oils of lavender from France. The list of products, edible and non-edible which have as an ingredient aluminum salts is quite long. Toothpaste is one of them. I use crystal salt instead: see top of page. Also containing aluminum are some tooth-whitening products. A worrisome factor in avoidance of aluminum is the sneaky component thereof in food-coloring. Some natural oil-paint pigments used by artists, such as cochineal red, can be augmented with aluminum.
An easily-avoided source of aluminum exists in cooking pots and pans. I have recently thrown away two large baking sheets, because I noticed the bottoms of cookies and bread baked upon them had metal leached onto them. I did some research on the internet, and found that Polar Ware's baking sheets are aluminum. Use stainless steel and cast iron pots. Cooking in non-lead coated earthenware, and Corning glass, is also safe.
When iron, calcium, magnesium, silicon and zinc levels in one's bloodstream are low, the absorption of aluminium increases. Older people are at particularly at risk because the kidneys and blood-brain barrier lose their effectiveness as we age. Mineral supplementation is a good idea.
A well-preserved blood-brain barrier is required to protect brain cells from being damaged by neurotoxins, which accumulate and poison brain cells. Factors which reduce the effectiveness of the blood-brain mechanism will cause a build -up there of mercury and aluminium. The increased use of mobile phones is believed to reduce the effectiveness of the blood-brain barrier; consequently, we ought to expect an increase in Alzheimer's Disease.
We are not powerless in the prevention of Alzheimer's Disease!
~~M-J, 2006

Fingernails Tell a Story

I posted something about wearing gloves in December. 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.
~~Copyright M-J de Mesterton September 11th, 2007
The Acid/Alkaline Balance in the Human Body
The environment of fluids in which your cells reside is known as your biological terrain. The following are four characteristics of your biological terrain: pH refers to the "potential of Hydrogen" and its activity level in fluids. Many people today have an overly acidic pH due to drinking colas, improper food combinations, consumption of processed foods, stress and pollution. Apple Cider Vinegar raises the alkalinity of the extra cellular fluid that surrounds your cells. An alkaline, versus acidic, environment is believed to be one of the major deterrents to tissue damage, aging and the growth of disease organisms. When your body consists of a more neutral to alkaline environment, the body can then use its amazing God given ability to heal itself naturally. Our bodies are alkaline by design and acid by function. Maintaining alkalinity is essential for life health and vitality. All leading biochemists and medical physiologists have recognized pH or acid/alkaline balance as the most important aspect of a balanced and healthy body. They have long known that the maintenance of an alkaline pH is critical to cellular health. We live and die at the cellular level. In order to understand pH balance, it is necessary to realize that all the 75 trillion cells of the human body are slightly acidic and must exist in a slightly alkaline environment (the body fluid) if they are to remain healthy and produce energy. Alkalinity is anabolic (builds up) and acidity is catabolic (tears down). As each cell performs its task of respiration, it secretes metabolic wastes which are acidic. These wastes are the end product of cellular metabolism and must not be allowed to build up. The body goes to great lengths to neutralize and detoxify these acids before they are in a position to act as poisons in and around the cell, changing the environment of the cell. Optimum alkalinity at cellular level equates to optimum health. Help to put the alkaline balance back into your body by taking a daily tablespoon of Apple Cider Vinegar in a glass of water.

Japanese research has shown that ingesting a daily dose of vinegar may aid in the control of blood pressure, blood sugar levels and fat accumulation.

"Apple Cider Vinegar is the #1 food, I recommend for maintaining the body's vital acid-alkaline balance.--Gabriel Cousens, M.D., author of Conscious Eating
Apple Cider Vinegar keeps your pH level of your body fluids balanced so that your body can fight disease naturally.

Health News Items from M-J's Mini-Blog

 The Health-Benefits of Turmeric

Posted at 02:00 PM on October 26, 2009

Photo of Turmeric Copyright M-J de Mesterton 2009


A Possible Weight-Loss Aid in Turmeric

Posted by editormj on April 24, 2009

Researchers have determined that laboratory mice given a diet supplemented with curcumin experience a reduction in the formation of fat tissue, and a lowered number of blood-vessels that feed fat. Curcumin is the active ingredient and major polyphenol in the bright yellow spice from India known as turmeric.

The growth and expansion of fat tissues requires new blood vessels, a process known as angiogenesis. In fat tissue, this process is mediated by the secretion of adipokines, such as leptin, adiponectin, resistin, interleukin-6 and vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF). The researchers first investigated the effect of curcumin in cultured human cells to which adipokines had been added to stimulate angiogenesis. They found that the ability of curcumin to inhibit angiogenesis was partly due to the reduced expression of VEGF.
Subsequently, the mice were fed a high-fat diet supplemented with 500 milligrams curcumin per kilogram of food, for three months. Weight-gain was reduced in the mice who were given curcumin. The curcumin-supplemented mice had lower weight and reduced total-body fat. They also had lower liver-weights, and experienced a reduction in VEGF (vascular endothelial growth factor), indicating reduced risk for angiogenesis.

Also called curcumin, turmeric is a mustard-yellow spice from India. Indians use it more for its healing properties than for taste. Turmeric has an innocuous flavor, and adds color to foods.

In India, turmeric has been revered for its healing properties, and thus is used as a daily dietary supplement. In the Ayurvedic system of health, turmeric has medicinal properties and is an anti-inflammatory agent to treat a wide variety of conditions, including flatulence, jaundice, menstrual difficulties, bloody urine, hemorrhage, toothache, bruises, chest pain, and colic. Because of its effects on enzyme related to inflammation, turmeric may have the same mode of action as anti-inflammatory drugs, without the side-effects. Curcumin is used for cuts and burns and is known as an antiseptic/antibacterial. It is also used to remedy stomach-ulcers.

The U.S. National Institues of Health has four clinical trials in progress, involving curcumin as a treatment for pancreatic cancer, multiple myeloma, Alzheimer’s, and colorectal cancer. According to a 2005 article in the Wall Street Journal titled, “Common Indian Spice Stirs Hope,” research activity into curcumin, turmeric’s active ingredient, is burgeoning. Two-hundred and fifty-six curcumin-study papers were published in 2005, according to a search of the U.S. National Library of Medicine.

The Benefits of Turmeric, Noted in The Okinawa Program

This 2001 book, The Okinawa Program by Bradley J. Willcox, M.D., D. Craig Willcox, Ph. D., and Makoto Suzuki, M.D., is based upon the 25-year-long Okinawa Centenarian Study. It is one of my favorite diet and health books.

Turmeric has recently garnered respect and much publicity as a medicinal plant from the ginger family. The qualities of turmeric are not news to the famously long-living people of Okinawa, as related on page 149:


Ucchin, or Turmeric M-J’s pronunciation note: TER-mer-ick

(Curcuma longa, Jiang Huang, Curcuma, Indian saffron, Ukon, Valerian)

Ucchin, commonly known in North America as turmeric,  is one of the Okinawans’ favorite herbs (as it is in India), and claims a multitude of health benefits. It’s known as ukon to the Japanese….

Folkloric Claims

Turmeric is from the ginger family. The stalk of the plant is the part most commonly used in both herbal and traditional medicine, and is the part that provides the distinctive yellow-orange powder that adds flavor and color to curry. It was probably brought to Okinawa centuries ago from India, which had active trade relations with the Ryukyu Kingdom (as Okinawa was formerly known). In Ayurvedic medicine…turmeric is thought to strengthen the immune system, relieve inflammatory conditions such as arthritis, improve digestion, relieve gas, killl parasites and worms, alleviate menstrual problems, dissolve gallstones, and relieve other ailments. The Okinawans are in full accord with these claims, and highly prize their turmeric.

Excerpt, page 150

Turmeric possesses significant antioxidant properties, comparable to that of vitamins E or C, which is probably why it proves powerful against cancer. The American Institute for Cancer Research has reported some degree of inhibition for cancers of the GI tract, including oral, esophageal, stomach, and colon cancers. And, there is further evidence for its effectiveness against breast and skin cancers.


News Release from the Royal College of Psychiatrists:

Eating a curry once or twice a week could help prevent the onset of Alzheimer’s disease and dementia. The magic ingredient in curry is curcumin, a component of the spice, turmeric.

Professor Murali Doraiswamy, director of the Mental Fitness Laboratory at the Department of Psychiatry, Duke University Medical Center, Carolina, told delegates at the Royal College of Psychiatrists’ Annual Meeting in Liverpool that curcumin prevented the spread of amyloid plaques, found outside brain cells.

These plaques, along with neurofibrillary tangles, are thought to contribute to the degradation of the wiring in brain cells and lead to the subsequent symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease.

Professor Doraiswamy said: “There is very solid evidence that curcumin binds to plaques, and basic research on animals engineered to produce human amyloid plaques has shown benefits. Turmeric has been studied not just in Alzheimer’s research but for a variety of conditions, such as cancer and arthritis. Turmeric is often referred to as the spice of life in ancient Indian medical lore.”

A clinical trial is now underway at the University of California, Los Angeles, to test curcumin’s effects in human Alzheimer’s patients and specifically on their amyloid plaque proteins. A small pilot trail was completed to determine the right dose and researchers have now embarked on a larger study.

Professor Doraiswamy told the Royal College of Psychiatrists’ Annual Meeting: “You can modify a mouse so that at about 12 months its brain is riddled with plaques. If you feed this rat a curcumin-rich diet it dissolves these plaques. The same diet prevented younger mice from forming new plaques. The next step is to test curcumin on human amyloid plaque formation using newer brain scans and there are plans for that.”

Studies looking at populations show that people who eat a curry meal two or three times a week seem to have a lower risk for dementia, he told the Annual Meeting. “Those studies seem to show that you need only consume what is part of the normal diet – but the research studies are testing higher doses to see if they can maximise the effect. It would be equivalent of going on a curry spree for a week.”

However, curry may be just one of the ingredients that prevent degeneration of the brain. “If you are eating fatty burgers and smoking then don’t expect an occasional curry to counterbalance a poor lifestyle. However, if you have a good diet and take plenty of exercise, eating curry regularly could help prevent dementia,” he said.

Turmeric is also found in mustard and Professor Doraiswamy predicted a day when – for those unable, or unwilling, to consume curries regularly – the public might be advised to take a ‘curry’ pill every day if the findings are confirmed in human studies.

Professor Doraiswamy and other scientists are testing a brain PET scan which can detect the prevalence of plaques in the living brain. At the moment, a definitive diagnosis can be made only after the patient has died. A second scan also being developed can detect both plaques and tangles – both of which are present in Alzheimer’s.

Many leading drugs being developed are targeting the plaques, said Professor Doraiswamy, and clinicians were prescribing these dugs “blindly” without knowing the plaque load in the brain. He said: “The hope is that with the PET scans you can scan their brains, find out whether their plaque load is high or low, and tailor treatment. If their plaque load is low, then you have to question the diagnosis.”

Some 20-30 per cent of diagnoses were wrong, said Professor Doraiswamy, and the condition could be vascular dementia or any number of other conditions masquerading as Alzheimer’s. “If you gave that person treatment it wouldn’t help – it would be a waste of money and in some cases hurt”.

The professor said it was conceivable in the near future, when preventive therapies were available, that a 50-year-old with a strong history of Alzheimer’s could be screened to determine the levels of plaque in their brains and then initiate anti-plaque therapy.

Professor Doraiswamy, a leading expert on brain health and fitness, grew up in Southern Indian town of Madras famous for its fiery curries. He is currently on a lecture tour promoting his consumer book The Alzheimer’s Action Plan, published in April.

Annual Meeting of the Royal College of Psychiatrists, BT Convention Centre, Liverpool, 2 -5 June 2009

Royal College of Psychiatrists


Health-Promoting Stir-Fry

Posted at 04:10 PM on October 23, 2009


I slow-cooked a mixture of quinoa and basmati rice this morning. To eat with it, I sautéed chile peppers, onions, pineapple, carrots and ginger in a wok primed with coconut oil. Onions, chiles, ginger and coconut oil are known to inhibit viral infections.


The Average American Woman's Weight

Posted at 04:27 PM on August 27, 2009

The average American woman weighs 164 pounds (source: Health Magazine). That's a revelation, since most of them pretend to weigh much less. Actually, it is a good weight for a mature woman of 5' 6" and a little taller.


Dr. Mao's Natural Skin Remedies

Posted at 09:03 AM on June 04, 2009

Turmeric as a Possible Weight-Loss Aid

Posted at 01:16 AM on April 25, 2009

Researchers have determined that laboratory mice given a diet supplemented with curcumin experience a reduction in the formation of fat tissue, and a lowered number of blood-vessels that feed fat. Curcumin is the active ingredient and major polyphenol in the bright yellow spice from India known as turmeric. 

The growth and expansion of fat tissues requires new blood vessels, a process known as...Read Full Post »

Botox, a Poison

Posted at 04:59 AM on March 17, 2009

Freezing your face has dangerous psychological consequences.

Ab Flatteners

Posted at 06:50 PM on December 26, 2008

Ab Flatteners for the Post-Christmas Stomach

A Pretty Picture Tells a Story

"The beautiful romance of life never blooms in the morass of liquor or drug addiction."

Protecting Yourself from H1N1 Flu, Grippe, or Influenza Infection

The only advice given is to "wash your hands". And then, they tell people to cover up when coughing or sneezing. That only works for carriers of the disease.

Hand-washing is always a good idea, and some of us live every day as if there were a rampant infection on the land. It will do you no good if you touch something with live germs on it, and the virus enters your skin. Or, if you just accidentally touch your face before washing or sterilizing hands with antibacterial gel. Nearly everyone has a torn cuticle or papercut, through which the virus will immediately invade the body.

The only way to protect your hands from germs in everyday contact with the public is to wear gloves. This includes while grocery shopping and visiting other public establishments. And, since this flu virus is airborne, run like Hell when someone coughs or sneezes, and do not let a cashier with a runny nose ring up your purchases.  Once you bring your supplies home,unpack them wearing latex or rubber gloves, throw the new things into the sink and wash them before storage.

~~Copyright M-J de Mesterton 2009 


Make Your Own Vegan Probiotics 

Click Here to Read M-J's Main Website, Elegant Survival
I processed raw purple cabbage with miso, and finely-sliced turnips with Himalayan Salt in my Japanese pickle press to make probiotic-rich vegetables. The P-Carrot Pickle Press is Made in Japan.
~~Copyright M-J de Mesterton 2014~~



 We have tested this innovative, benign, helpful product  on a deep, post-operative wound, with great success (nothing worked for two months, then we tried Derma-Wound). I just want people who have wounds that won't heal to know that there is help. Dr. David Dixon of Arizona developed Derma-Wound. He has staff members who will answer your questions.





Coconut Oil for Eczema Relief

We use it, with great success. It is also a healthy fat which helps in diabetes prevention.


The Healing Help of Horse Chestnut and Witch Hazel

The Curative Wonders of Witch Hazel

M-J de Mesterton: ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Witch hazel is a commonly-available liquid distilled from a plant, the Latin name of which is Hamamelis Virginiana. Native Americans discovered the curative powers of this winter-blooming plant and used it medicinally long before the British and Europeans arrived. It has a very pleasant scent, and, depending on the distiller, contains varying amounts of alcohol.  This helpful, benign  herb is used externally on acne, cuts, sunburns, bruises, inflamed or itching skin, sores, bruises, and swelling. Witch hazel extract is a compound that includes bioflavanoids, gallic acid, catechins,  essential oils (cymophenol, hexenol, and eugenol), choline, saponins, and assorted aromatic bitters. Witch hazel is traditionally used as a facial astringent. Applied at frequent intervals during the day, witch hazel assists in the healing of cold sores. Witch hazel is traditionally used for treatment of shaving cuts and abrasions, and is also a component in some shaving-creams. It is also high in anti-oxidants. Witch hazel is used for relief of eczema, psoriasis, as a refreshing after-shave splash, for treating insect bites, poison ivy, to relieve the swelling of hemorrhoids and soothe varicose veins.

Witch hazel can be used instead of hair spray or gel to keep hair in place. Fill a little spray bottle with it, undiluted. I like to use the fragrant herbal concoction for setting my hair. Witch hazel doesn't damage hair, weigh it down or make it sticky. I use Dickinson's, made in Connecticut.

Kiehl's Blue Astringent Herbal Lotion, formulated in 1964,  contains Hamamelis Virginiana (witch hazel), together with Aloe Barbadensis and aloe leaf leaf extract, limonene, menthol and other ingredients.

Witch hazel will soften and smooth-out the crazed and cracked paint of old furniture-finishes, when applied with a rag and left to soak for a few hours.

Instead of buying many products for the aforementioned purposes, stocking up on witch hazel is an Elegant Survival Recommendation that will save money and trips to the store.


~~Copyright M-J de Mesterton 2008, for Elegant Survival

Horse Chestnut: Help for Circulation and Heaviness

M-J de Mesterton: ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Horse chestnut can reduce bloating and aid in circulation. It is used for relief of varicose veins and water-retention. It is usually powdered and ingested in capsule-form.


Recommended Reading
An Apple a Day Just Might Keep the Doctor Away!

Apples, because of their pectin 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.

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, something 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.  The apple provides antioxidants for the body. Oxidative damage on cells by free radicals contributes to age-related brain deterioration. Alzheimer's Disease and dementia are examples. Apples have been cited as anti-Alzheimerian. 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, called 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.
See "Elegant Cuisine" for M-J's Elegant Apple Pie recipe.
Wal-Mart's Low-Cost Drugs Help the Poor and Uninsured

Wal-Mart's List, in PDF Form, August 2008: Equate is Wal-Mart's line of equivalent over-the-counter (OTC) products, costing much less than famous brands.

Wal-Mart Pharmacy also has a generic prescription drug list that has been offered for over a year, in most U.S. states, wherein there are nearly 361 drugs offered at around $4.00 per bottle. The total includes  24 new generic products. There are also many brand-name pharmaceuticals available at Wal-Mart Pharmacies by prescription for  $4.00 per month's supply.

Wall Street Journal Report

 Wal-Mart's List, in PDF Form, Spring 2008, of Its $4.00 Prescription Drugs

~~M-J de Mesterton, 2008


Walnuts: the Health-Nuts

Walnuts Rank High on New Nutrition Scales

 Photo of Walnuts Copyright M-J de Mesterton 2011

The following information was captured from California Walnut Growers, circa 2007:

Walnuts and other tree nuts and peanuts were recently ranked using the Index of Nutritional Quality (INQ) nutrient testing system at the Food Consulting Company of Del Mar, California [i]. According to Karen Duester, MS, RD who conducted the test, “Not surprisingly, walnuts ranked highest among the nuts in INQ. Because INQ relates to nutrient density, we looked at specific nutrients known to be abundant in nuts and peanuts: protein, fiber, omega-3, omega-6, vitamin E, potassium, magnesium, and zinc.”

On another independent scale, the Overall Nutritional Quality Index (ONQI)[ii] ranking system to be used by the Raley's grocery chain, walnuts received 82 points on a 100 point scale, an excellent score among foods and nuts [iii]. According to David Katz, MD, MPH a nationally renowned authority on nutrition and the principal inventor for the ONQI system, "When overall nutritional quality is assessed, the verdict is clear: walnuts are a great food -- they pack a lot of nutrient benefits in a nutshell!”

Jeffrey Blumberg, PhD, professor of nutrition science and policy at Tufts University and a member of the Hannaford Scientific Advisory Panel explains, “Walnuts are a whole food rich in antioxidants, alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), an essential omega-3 fatty acid, protein, fiber, and more. Whole walnuts receive the ‘best nutritional value’ three star ranking (the highest) due to their nutrient profile.”
Walnuts have nutritional qualities that are very important. One of the richest sources of alpha linolenic acid (ALA), the plant form of Omega-3, walnuts are unique among nuts and popular whole foods [v]. A one ounce serving of walnuts provides 2.57 grams of ALA, the plant form omega-3s, which is above the dietary reference intake (DRI) set by the National Academies’ Institute of Medicine. Walnuts are also one of the highest natural sources of antioxidants, according to Halvorsen’s study from American Journal of Clinical Nutrition in 2006 [vi].
15 years of clinical research on walnuts have shown benefits for the heart, and we’re not just talking about cholesterol reduction -- improved vascular function and a reduction in inflammation have also been documented [vii-xii]. Looking to the future and expanding on this base of knowledge, research is underway at a variety of prestigious universities looking into cancer, diabetes and issues of ageing.

[i] http://www.foodlabels.com/[ii]  http://www.griffinhealth.org/Research/ONQI.aspx[v]www.hanaford.com/Contents/Healthy_Living/Guiding_Stars/gs_faq.shtml[vi] Am J Clin Nutr. 2006 Jul;84(1):95-135    “Supportive but not conclusive research shows that eating 1.5 ounces of walnuts per day, as part of a low saturated fat and low cholesterol diet, and not resulting in increased caloric intake may reduce the risk of coronary heart disease.”[viii]   Circulation. 2002 Nov 19;106(21):2747-57[ix]     Hypertension. 2007 Aug;50(2):313-9[x]     J Am Coll Cardiol. 2006 Oct 17;48(8):1666-71[xi]    Arch Intern Med. 2007 Jun 11;167(11):1195-203.
[xii] Ann Intern Med. 2006 Jul 4;145(1):1-11 

Omega-3 Fatty Acids in Walnuts

How do Omega-3s work?
Inside your favorite kinds of nuts — walnuts, almonds, pecans and others — you’ll find many vitamins, minerals and other compounds your body needs for good health. There are the antioxidants found in vitamin E; several essential minerals such as magnesium, selenium, copper and manganese; and even fiber for more effective digestion. Thiamin, niacin, folate, phosphorus and zinc are all found in nuts.
Researchers believe that omega-3 fatty acids may help reduce the risk of heart disease by making the blood less sticky and less likely to form dangerous intravenous or arterial clots. Studies have also shown that omega-3s may lower the risk of stroke and prevent arthritis. In addition, there’s good evidence that omega-3s can increase HDL (good cholesterol), further reducing the risk of stroke and heart disease.
The omega-3s found in fish oil are thought to be responsible for the significantly lower incidence of breast cancer in Japanese women as compared to women in the United States. This may be because omega-3 fatty acids inhibit the tumor growth that is promoted by the acids found in other fats, such as corn and safflower oils.
Finally, the brain itself is composed of a whopping 60 percent fat. It too needs omega-3s to help build and maintain tissue. Brain function itself may be at stake: in treating major depression, for example, omega-3s seem to work by making it easier for brain cell receptors to process mood-related signals from neighboring neurons.
What are good sources of omega-3s?
Omega-3 fatty acids are plentiful in cold-water fish such as mackerel and salmon. They’re also found in walnuts, canola oil, soybean oil, tofu and leafy green vegetables. Which would you rather sprinkle on your morning cereal or grab for a nutritious snack?
Walnuts are a delectable, convenient alternative to fish, tofu and leafy greens. In fact, just a handful of walnuts provides as much omega-3s as a comparable serving of salmon. 

Medical Help from Professionals on the Web

Check out MedHelp



Health Updates from the News

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Study Enhances Proof of Broccoli as an Anti-Carcinogenic

Science Daily
Electrolux of Sweden's Anti-Noise Campaign

 Thursday, April 24, 2008

Electrolux: the Swedish Company's Anti-Noise Campaign

Noise can drive you out of your mind, or at least raise your blood pressure. AEG Electrolux, the innovative yet old and venerable Swedish appliance company has a campaign to create noise-pollution awareness, together with an electronic sign company called, ironically, "Blow-Up".

Noise Pollution Kills!

Photo: Dick van Patten Playing a Noise-Pollution Victim in Mel Brooks' Comedy, High Anxiety

I remember reading in Dagens Nyheter in the year 2000, about women who worked at nursery schools in Sweden being driven mad by the noise of many children at once screaming and shouting all day long. They had nightmares, and many other horrible symptoms, both physical and mental. Imagine the impact such a situation has on little children! I pity them, and consider myself fortunate to never have had to suffer pre-school or nursery school, where the very young child is forced to vie for attention among a great throng of others. It must be conducive to terrors and frustrations, and cause them to scream. Neighbors with barking dogs at all hours of the night are causing those around them to lose sleep, which can lead to the loss of jobs and can harm relationships because of its effect on the nerves. Booming car stereos that resemble thunder, or, even worse, replicate the sounds of bombing and earthquakes can terrify the calmest of adults. Noise pollution has many forms; some can be ameliorated, and some cannot. Electrolux is making quiet appliances, and that's important to city apartment living. We should all strive to make life serene by keeping our environment quieter, if possible. Peace begins with us.

Noise Pollution Kills