Antiviral Activity of Star Anise

Antiviral Activity of Star Anise

When glyphosate is applied to weeds, it kills them by disrupting the shikimate pathway which is the plant’s viral and bacterial defense. It dies after a few days.

Human cells do not have shikimate pathway. However, our gut bacteria do. The good bacteria in the gut suffers and the imbalance occurring in the microbiome, which affects our immunity, our defense against viruses, bacteria and other pathogens, as well as our defense against oxidative stress, and cancer mutations. Remember our immunity starts in the gut. Again, let me reiterate that, our immunity starts in the gut. And “all disease begins in the gut”, as Hippocrates, the Father of Medicine well understood. He is also well quoted for saying, “Let thy food be thy medicine, and medicine be thy food.” There’s a deeper scientific explanation we can delve into why it is so. Think and ask, why. That’s the key to finding answers.

And because of the controversial requirement of glyphosate use by the GMO crops, it makes us question if the system in place is meant to bring us health or lead us to be a more disease-stricken society.

Dr. Don Huber, Professor Emeritus, in Plant Pathology at the Purdue University said, “genetic engineering as we currently practice, it is really an infectious type of disease. In fact, Dr. Patrick Brown of the University of California said, it is much more like a virus infection than a breeding program.”

Wow, what a statement! A virus infection program. Somehow, we can hypothesize that the prevalence (total no. of people affected at a given time) of virus infections, its virality (ability to spread quickly) and virulence (deadliness) can somehow be attributed to glyphosate and GMO, and its effect to the shikimate pathway disruption in the human gut.

So, what can we do? The Creator gave us answers if we only look more deeply in nature. In the shikimate pathway, also known as the shikimic acid pathway, one important biochemical metabolite is the shikimic acid. It was first isolated in 1885 by Johan Fredrik Hyman, named after a Japanese flower, shikimi, the Japanese star anise.

Although known for its culinary significance, in centuries of old, it is not uncommon for the star anise to be hoarded and sold for a higher prize even worth more than gold when plague breaks out. In modern times, the shikimic acid from the Chinese star anise is used as a base for the production of Tamiflu (oseltamivir), an antiviral oral treatment for influenza A and B.

 

Ghosh, Christi and Banerjee in 2012 published the study of the production of the shikimic acid sourced from the seed of the Chinese star anise.

Patra and colleagues published the results of their study in January 29, 2020, Star Anise (Illicium verum): chemical compounds, antiviral properties, and clinical relevance. Besides the antiviral potential, they’ve also found a number of other potentials such as antioxidant, antimicrobial, antifungal, anthelminthic, insecticidal, secretolytic, antinociceptive, anti-inflammatory, gastroprotective, sedative properties, expectorant and spasmolytic, and estrogenic effects.

 

You know what I’m thinking, if it is that great, let’s put it into practice then. Absolutely!

This recipe is made by an amazing herbalist I personally know, Edris Clarke.

I named it Star Booster Shot.

You need:

5 Star Anise

10 Cloves

½ a slice of Lemon, juice

2-inch Ginger, grated

Cayenne as tolerated

1 ½ cup water

 

1. Boil the water.

2. Turn off the heat and remove the pot from the heat.

3. Then add the ginger. Add the cloves and star anise.

4. Steep in 10 minutes.

5. Strain and add the lemon juice and cayenne.

 

Let me quote Hippocrates again, “all disease begins in the gut”. “Let thy food be thy medicine, and medicine be thy food.”

Cheers to a healthy gut, a better immunity!

Myrtle Pettit is a Certified Clinical Nutritionist. She finished her Masters in Public Health with a concentration in Nutrition at Liberty University, Lynchburg, VA. Furthermore, her drive to combine theory and practice led her to Living Light Culinary Institute, Fort Bragg, CA, to be certified as a Raw Food Chef and Instructor. She also holds a Master Food Preserver from Cornell University. Myrtle offers one on one consultation, provides health lectures, seminars, and healthy cooking classes to promote a healthier lifestyle. She’s very supportive of her students’ journey to health in every stage.

Carcinogenic Glyphosate

Carcinogenic Glyphosate

 According to World Wild Life since 1930, the world’s chemical production have increased dramatically, 400 fold. And today we are not only facing chemicals produced by various power plants and industries, we are also bombarded with it in our very homes, from cleaning products to health and body care products. Environmental Working Group (EWG) has found substances in more than 2,000 home cleaning products that can cause health problems. And even in our food products there’s BPA but the glyphosate being the most controversial.

What is glyphosate? It is an herbicide. It kills weeds in crops. There are GE genetically engineered crops also known as G. M. O. genetically modified organism, like Bt corn, soy and cotton that were developed to be resistant to glyphosate. 

How does glyphosate kill weeds? It shuts down plant’s viral and bacterial defense, called the shikimate pathway. And thus, kill the plants in a few days. So how does that affect us as human beings? We’ll find out in a little bit. With the plants being killed, the genetically engineered glyphosate tolerant crops, however, survive.

 

Here’s the glyphosate agricultural use in 1996. And here’s 2012 agricultural use of glyphosate. This is excluding residential, urban, industrial and forest use.

RoundUp is the most popular pesticide containing an active ingredient, glyphosate.

It is estimated that half of the US cropland is GE corn, soybeans and cotton. Other common GE crops are canola, sugar beets and alfalfa. GE crops drive the sales of glyphosate.

Again, genetically engineered crops drive the glyphosate sales.

 

On GE/GMO cultivation:

Majority of the countries grow GMO depicted by the red color. 5 countries, US, Brazil, Argentina, Canada & India, make up 91% of the global GM crops. Other countries that grow GM crops: South Africa, Australia, Bolivia, Philippines, Spain, Vietnam, Bangladesh, Colombia, Honduras, Chile, Sudan, Slovakia, Costa Rica, China, Paraguay, Uruguay, Mexico, Portugal, Czech R., Pakistan & Myanmar.

Very few countries have laws restrictions on GMO cultivation but allows GMO importation depicted by a yellow tone. And only 8 countries ban both cultivation and importation, Algeria, Bhutan, Kyrgyzstan, Peru, Madagascar, Russia, Venezuela & Zimbabwe.

 

Going back to glyphosate. The use of glyphosate is not only for the GE or GMO crops but for pre-harvest of non-gmo crops, like wheat which is hybridized, other grains and legumes. It helps to dry it quickly and uniformly. Data shows about 28% of U.S. wheat acreage or 15.3 million acres were applied with 14.8 million pounds of glyphosate.

Pesticide drift is another issue as the glyphosate drifts to other areas where a crop producing seed grows, it becomes unfit for planting the next year. It makes the farmers dependent then on GMO seeds, and buys it again and again. So, the cycle continues.

 

WHO (World Health Organization) – IARC

(International Agency for Research on Cancer classified glyphosate in March 2015 as Group 2A, probably carcinogenic to humans

Group 1 “known” carcinogen

Group 2B – possibly carcinogenic to humans

 

However, EPA changed their assessment thrice: 1985 – a possible carcinogen

1991 – non-carcinogenic

2016 – not likely carcinogenic to humans

 

Let’s take a look at a particular study from the Journal of Organic Systems that will blow you away.

Genetically engineered crops, glyphosate and the deterioration of health in the United States of America.

For the purpose of understanding the study, let us understand about Pearson correlation coefficient or Pearson r. It is used in statistics to determine the relationship between A and B. The closer the relationship, the higher the Pearson r, making it highly significant. The further the relationship, the lower the Pearson r, making it insignificant.

It showed a high degree of correlation in the 22 diseases plotted against GMO corn & soy, and glyphosate applications.

Senile Dementia, Autism, Thyroid Cancer, Bladder Cancer, Acute Kidney Failure, End Stage Renal Disease (ESRD), Intestinal Infection, Lipoprotein Metabolism Disorder, Cancer of the Kidney, Diabetes, Renal Failure, Obesity, Liver Cancer, Inflammatory Bowel Disease, Hepatitis C , Stroke, Hypertension, Pancreatic Cancer, Alzheimer, Myeloid Leukemia, Parkinson’s Disease, Multiple Sclerosis

 

Even though we can’t determine the causation or cause and effect. But we can see that there is a higher possibility it a great contributing factor to the following diseases based on the results. That’s why it’s important to grow our own food, non-GMO and organic.

Myrtle Pettit is a Certified Clinical Nutritionist. She finished her Masters in Public Health with a concentration in Nutrition at Liberty University, Lynchburg, VA. Furthermore, her drive to combine theory and practice led her to Living Light Culinary Institute, Fort Bragg, CA, to be certified as a Raw Food Chef and Instructor. She also holds a Master Food Preserver from Cornell University. Myrtle offers one on one consultation, provides health lectures, seminars, and healthy cooking classes to promote a healthier lifestyle. She’s very supportive of her students’ journey to health in every stage.

Nut Consumption and CHD

Nut Consumption and CHD

Are nuts good for your heart? Let’s find out.

Iowa Women’s Health Study

Frequent nut intake and risk of death from coronary heart disease and all causes in postmenopausal women (Ellsworth, Kushi & Folsom, 2001)

In 1986, the Iowa Women’s Health Study include 34,000 postmenopausal women with no cardiovascular disease. And one of the things the researchers studied was the frequency of their nut consumption and their risk of coronary heart disease or CHD.

After 12 years of follow-up, 3,726 women died and 657 of which were caused by CHD. So, they found that their consumption of nut had a modest protection against all-cause mortality and coronary heart disease.

Two more studies coming up… Let’s find out if they have a similar result.

Harvard Nurses’ Health Study

Frequent Nut Consumption and risk of coronary heart disease in women: prospective cohort study (Hu et. al., 1998) by Frank Hu and colleagues.

An earlier study than Iowa Women’s Health Study. Their sample population is 86,016 female nurses without previous diagnosis of CHD or coronary heart disease. The researchers found other risk factors such as age, smoking and other variables. They adjusted that and determined the significance of nut consumption. Women who ate 5 oz. of nuts per week have lower risk of fatal coronary heart disease and non-fatal myocardial infarction or heart attack.

Apart from this, epidemiological and clinical studies support the benefit of nut consumption in coronary heart disease.

 

The Adventist Health Study

A possible protective effect of nut consumption on risk of coronary heart disease. (Fraser et al., 1992)

This is the original study, followed by Harvard’s Nurses’ Health Study and Iowa Women’s Health Study on the nut consumption and Coronary Heart Disease. It is a derivative of the Adventist Health Study 1 conducted from 1974-1988 with 34,192 California Adventists ages 25 and older. This study was published by the lead researcher Dr. Gary Fraser with his colleagues in 1992.

What was the result of the study?

They found that those who consume nuts more than 4 times a week have fewer relative risks, mainly confirmed CHD fatal events and confirmed nonfatal MI (aka heart attack) as compared to those who consume nuts less than once per week. This result was apparent in 16 subgroups of the sample population.

Another interesting variable in their study was beef consumption, which showed higher risk in confirmed fatal CHD for men who ate beef at least 3 times a week. It did not show the same result in women, even for non-fatal MI or heart attack. But that doesn’t give women a license to eat beef, especially when injected with hormones. It’s better to be a vegetarian. Case in point, I have to prove that to you with several research studies.

So, going back to the nut consumption, the favorable fatty acid profile of nuts is one of the plausible explanations of its protective effect on coronary heart disease.

Eat nuts more than 4 times a week and reap its protective effect on the coronary heart disease.

So, what is your favorite nut? Well, I like pili nut. Search that, it’s only found in Southeast Asia, particularly Philippines. I love cashews and almonds, very versatile nuts, great for butter, cream, milk, flour and more. I also like pistachios. And I love walnuts, a perfect balance of omega 3 and omega 6. Brain food!

And of course, the biggest nut!

C-O  C-O  N-U-T

Well, just an advisory, it’s not a nut!

But if you’re allergic to nuts, don’t worry, you have a great alternative, coconut! And avocados, olives and olive oil, and your seeds like, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, flax seeds, chia seeds, hemp seeds and sesame seeds

Myrtle Pettit is a Certified Clinical Nutritionist. She finished her Masters in Public Health with a concentration in Nutrition at Liberty University, Lynchburg, VA. Furthermore, her drive to combine theory and practice led her to Living Light Culinary Institute, Fort Bragg, CA, to be certified as a Raw Food Chef and Instructor. She also holds a Master Food Preserver from Cornell University. Myrtle offers one on one consultation, provides health lectures, seminars, and healthy cooking classes to promote a healthier lifestyle. She’s very supportive of her students’ journey to health in every stage.

The Alliums

The Alliums

Alliums, a Latin word for garlic, are monocotyledon flowering plants, like onions, garlic, leeks, chives, shallots, scallions and leek. The allium family contains sulfuric compounds, which makes it pungent. These important culinary herbs add delicate flavor and pungency to the dish. But not only that, these are important source of vitamins and minerals, antioxidants, anti-inflammatory quercetin, anti-lipidemic saponins, and antihypertensive allyl sulfides. No wonder it is included in the list of Superfoods! 

In ancient Egypt, garlic was prized more than gold. And today in China, businessmen invest more in garlic than in gold and silver. Moreover, an old story about an onion cut in half, left in a windowsill, saved a family during a flu epidemic in1919 that had taken many people’s lives. The doctor who visited the family, to his amazement explored their house of what could possibly protect them from the virus. His focus turned into the onion that the mother usually leaves by their window. He examined the onion under a microscope, and found many viruses and bacteria trapped therein.

There are many potent mixtures of garlic and onions to help prevent flu and to strengthen the immune system. But one that is really powerful is the Rocket Fuel of Dr. Agatha Thrash. It is a great natural antibiotic and anti-viral concoction.

Rocket Fuel

  • ½ cup lemon juice
  • 4-5 garlic cloves
  • ¼ onion, medium size
  • 2 to 3 inch ginger
  • 3-4 tablespoons of honey
  • a pinch of cayenne
  • ¾ cups of water

Process well all the ingredients in a blender. Drink a cup to ward off microorganisms and boost your immunity! If storing it, leave it in a glass container (because it will burn the plastic), and drink it as soon as you can.

Myrtle Pettit is a Certified Clinical Nutritionist. She finished her Masters in Public Health with a concentration in Nutrition at Liberty University, Lynchburg, VA. Furthermore, her drive to combine theory and practice led her to Living Light Culinary Institute, Fort Bragg, CA, to be certified as a Raw Food Chef and Instructor. She also holds a Master Food Preserver from Cornell University. Myrtle offers one on one consultation, provides health lectures, seminars, and healthy cooking classes to promote a healthier lifestyle. She’s very supportive of her students’ journey to health in every stage.

Choose Health, Choose Life

 

Today, we face the challenge of sorting through tons of information about health, in order to find relevance in the bits and pieces of what we get. We are in a crisis of solving the public health issues, despite the advancement in research, science and technology. The double burden of diseases, both communicable and lifestyle diseases, remains prevalent in our society. Moreover, we have a broken food system.

Food is a necessity for survival. It is vital to health and wellness. The nutrients we need come from the food we eat. The food is broken down, metabolized and assimilated into our body. Hippocrates, the father of medicine, recognized its substantial role in man’s existence. “Let food be thy medicine, and medicine thy food.” And it is no wonder why our society is sick and overweight, because many have not fully understood the value of eating healthy. It is one thing to die of hunger, but another thing to die of excess. A trite saying goes, “Eat to live not live to eat”. We have to eat at a cellular level. Eat to nourish our bodies.

Perhaps it’s not just the issue of making informed decision, but the problem lies in other predisposing, precipitating and perpetuating factors. Similar lessons we can adopt from 5 A’s of access to care can be applied to access to food: affordability, availability, accessibility, accommodation, and acceptability. We have to use these measures to improve our current food system. It would not take overnight, for it is a long overhaul process. But one by one we can make a difference.

And that is our aim at Kitch’n Gardens, to help people make educated and informed decision in their lifestyle choices. As well as to integrate both knowledge and practical know-how to grow food and cook healthy. The more people are surrounded with healthful choices, the easier it is for them to make that shift. We can choose to be passive spectators or be active participants in finding solutions to these problems.

Therefore, choose health, choose life, and make a difference!

 

Myrtle Pettit is a Certified Clinical Nutritionist. She finished her Masters in Public Health with a concentration in Nutrition at Liberty University, Lynchburg, VA. Furthermore, her drive to combine theory and practice led her to Living Light Culinary Institute, Fort Bragg, CA, to be certified as a Raw Food Chef and Instructor. She also holds a Master Food Preserver from Cornell University. Myrtle offers one on one consultation, provides health lectures, seminars, and healthy cooking classes to promote a healthier lifestyle. She’s very supportive of her students’ journey to health in every stage.

Hello World!

Hello and welcome to Kitch’n Gardens!

Let me walk you through… It all started with a concept of capturing health, food, canning and gardening in one. Food and sustainability are crucial issues that impact nations’ health and wellbeing. And from all walks of life, culture and tradition, food is an integral part of one’s existence and survival. Even celebrations are centered on food, family gatherings from weddings, anniversaries, birthdays, to baptisms, graduations and holidays. Thus it becomes more personal, such that it leaves us longing for our comfort food, relative to our emotional experience.

“What we eat is what we are!”. Farm-to-table experience makes people more conscious about what they eat, thereby bearing compassion, gratitude, and openhandedness. Food becomes a principle of giving, planting to grow abundantly, and sharing it to plant little seeds of kindness. Hence, food becomes even more satisfying.

From here on, diverse topics will be posted, from growing food to cooking healthy, vegan and raw recipes to canning and preservation. Hope this will help you on your journey.

 

Wishing you best in your health and happiness!
Myrtle