Posts

Showing posts from October, 2011

Happy Halloween - Japan Style!

Image
Modern day Halloween came to Japan probably with Tokyo Disneyland and the celebration of Halloween night.
Despite Japan’s new interest with Halloween, it already has an old tradition with regards to commemorating the dead.

The festival of Obon, celebrated during July or August, is a 500-year old Buddhist custom where families visit, clean and decorate their ancestors’ graves with fruits and lanterns.

The name Obon, which is derived from the Sanskrit phrase meaning, “hanging upside down”, comes from a myth about a disciple of Buddha who was able to see his dead mother hanging upside-down in Buddhist hell. His intercession through offerings allowed his mother to be released, and his subsequent dance of joy became known as Bon Odori, or “Bon dance”. Bon Odori has many variations throughout the islands, although the typical dance consists of people circling a high wooden scaffold called a yagura.

FESTIVALS IN JAPAN - Oct 29 & 30

Image
Kikusui Matsuri Festival at Futaarayama Shrine, Utsunomiya, Tochigi Pref. Yabusame (horseback archery) is held at the shrine, twice from 9 a.m. and from 3:30 p.m. on both days. A parade of horen (a sacred palanquin) accompanied by armored warriors and Yabusame horses is held from 9:30 a.m. to around 3:30 p.m. on both days. In the case of heavy rain, the event will be canceled.

Scary Facts - Would you add Burnt Cow Bone in your Coffee?

Image
Would you put a teaspoon of powdered, burnt cow bone into your morning coffee? I think most people here would say no. But, if you use pure white sugar (the most common type), you probably are putting bone char in your drink. Bone char has been used to whiten sugar since the process was first patented, in 1812.

Our Appendix Is Not Useless – It Incubates Probiotics

Image
In the past, the appendix (see figure) was largely thought to be useless. Appendicitis, a life-threatening condition, would call for removal of the appendix. In 2007, Randal et al. at Duke University conducted research into the vermiform appendix. The researchers observed that when the body was under attack by pathogens, the appendix would release probiotic bacteria that would perfectly counter the specific type of invaders. The appendix does this by releasing them into the cecum when the body is infected.

HAPPY DIWALI!

Image
To All Our Indian Friends, Happy Diwali!

Coffee may prevent depression, scientists say - from BBC Health News

Image
By Michelle Roberts, Health reporter, BBC News Women who drink two or more cups of coffee a day are less likely to get depressed, research suggests. It is not clear why it might have this effect, but the authors believe caffeine in coffee may alter the brain's chemistry. Decaffeinated coffee did not have the same effect. The findings, published in Archives of Internal Medicine, come from a study of more than 50,000 US female nurses. The experts are now recommending more work to better understand the link. And they say it is certainly too soon to start recommending that women should drink more coffee to boost mood. Caffeine lift The Harvard Medical School team tracked the health of the women over a decade from 1996 to 2006 and relied on questionnaires to record their coffee consumption. Just over 2,600 of the women developed depression over this time period. More of these women tended to be non- or low-coffee drinkers rather than frequent coffee consumers. Compared with women who drank o…

How Much Hair Do we Lose in a Day?

Image
Every day the average person loses 60-100 strands of hair. Unless you’re already bald, chances are good that you’re shedding pretty heavily on a daily basis. Your hair loss will vary in accordance with the season, pregnancy, illness, diet and age.

Probiotics Are Responsible For 70% Of Our Immune Response

Image
According to Casey Adams Ph.D., probiotics play a role in 70-80% of our immune response. Probiotics stimulate everything from T-cells to macrophages. Probiotics also activate cytokines and phagocytic cells to coordinate the immune response. As in another study done by the Royal Society of Medcine in UK, 90% of infections & diseases are contracted via our Gastro-intestinal Tract (GI Tract). This further proves the imprtance that Probiotics play in our lives in our Immunity. Current studies on the Microbiome of our GI tract by BIO E in Japan would reveal the co-relation between the type of bateria strains, it's DNA & in our own DNA interaction & Immunity. For more information on Probiotics on our immunity click here
Also on the types of Probiotic Production & Why it matters click here.

How Strong is our Stomach Acids?

Image
The acid in your stomach is strong enough to dissolve razorblades. While you certainly shouldn’t test the fortitude of your stomach by eating a razorblade or any other metal object for that matter, the acids that digest the food you eat aren’t to be taken lightly. Hydrochloric acid, the type found in your stomach, is not only good at dissolving the pizza you had for dinner but can also eat through many types of metal. That's why BIO-15 Probiotics have capsules that are Enteric (Double) coated & PH balanced to ensure it's contents reach the Intestines before it's "digested" by our stomach.

5 Interesting Facts About your Brain.

Image
The brain operates on the same amount of power as 10-watt light bulb. The cartoon image of a light bulb over your head when a great thought occurs isn’t too far off the mark. Your brain generates as much energy as a small light bulb even when you’re sleeping.The human brain cell can hold 5 times as much information as the Encyclopedia Britannica. Or any other encyclopedia for that matter. Scientists have yet to settle on a definitive amount, but the storage capacity of the brain in electronic terms is thought to be between 3 or even 1,000 terabytes. The National Archives of Britain, containing over 900 years of history, only takes up 70 terabytes, making your brain’s memory power pretty darn impressive. The brain is much more active at night than during the day. Logically, you would think that all the moving around, complicated calculations and tasks and general interaction we do on a daily basis during our working hours would take a lot more brain power than, say, lying in bed. Turns …

Fight Cancer with Bright Colours!

Image
It's all in the color! The brighter the produce color is the better antioxidant it is. Blueberries (and other bright-colored berries), red cabbage, and eggplant are a few good antioxidant foods. In a study, Monica Giusti found that these produce not only stopped tumors from growing, but also killed about 20% of tumor cells. We would be discussing on the colours of health in our upcoming issues.

100-year-old earns record, global attention after marathon run

Image
Never too old to set records

Fauja Singh, a 100-year-old runner, earned a spot in the Guiness World Book of Records for becoming the oldest person to complete a full-distance marathon when he finished the Toronto Marathon on Sunday.

It took Singh more than eight hours to cross the finish line, more than six hours after Kenya’s Kenneth Mungara won the event. He was the last competitor to complete the course.
“Beating his original prediction, he’s overjoyed,” said his coach and translator, Harmander Singh. “Earlier, just before we came around the (final) corner, he said, ‘Achieving this will be like getting married again.’ ”

Certainly, Singh has shown to all of us that age is never an excuse to do anything.

What's Under Your Mattress?

Image
It's not Halloween yet but it's true...

Average pillows and mattresses contain millions of fungi cells from 16 fungi species. This fungi (normally found in damp and moldy places) come from night time sweating. The average person sweats about 100 liters each year. In addition to fungi, other bed partners are dust mites—mattresses gain a pound or more each year from dust mites.

Probiotics In Our Body Outweigh Our Brain

Image
The typically human brain weights about 3 lbs & a healthy human body will have over 3.5 lbs (2.5kg) of probiotic bacteria & organisms. The fact that our heart weights only 0.7 pounds, our liver weights about 4 pounds, makes our probiotic bacteria one of the largest organs in our body.

What is the Largest Human Internal Organ?

Image
The largest internal organ is the small intestine. Despite being called the smaller of the two intestines, your small intestine is actually four times as long as the average adult is tall. If it weren’t looped back and forth upon itself it wouldn’t fit inside the abdominal cavity.

FESTIVALS IN JAPAN - Oct 15 & 16

Image
Kawagoe Matsuri Festival in Kawagoe, Saitama Pref., designated as one of the National Important Intangible Folk Cultural Assets., features a parade of 14 floats to the tune of Ohayashi festival music. The highlight of the festival is Hikkawase, in which the floats are pulled by townspeople jostling each other at three places in the city from 6:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. on both days.

Fish, it's Good for Your Sanity!

Image
Junk food makes people insane!

The increase in mental disorders in the last several years could be attributed to the increase in the consumption of an unhealthy diet.

However, foods rich with omega-3 fatty acid (mainly vegetables & fish) help keep the brain healthy. People eat 1/3 less vegetables and 2/3 less fish than they did 50 years ago

(BBC News).

Have an Open Wound? Use Maggots instead.

Image
Maggots are more effective than modern antibiotics for treating open wounds, especially that bacteria are developing immunity to antibiotics. Maggots on open wounds will eat all decaying flesh within three days, will leave healthy flesh alone & will not cause any side effects. Recent studies have shown that Probiotics (friendly Bacteria) have some anti-biotic properties. In some cultures, cultured Probiotics have been used, for centuries, to treat open wounds and skin allergies & diseases.

Pink-grapefruit juice drinks may contain bugs.

Image
You won’t find it listed in the contents, but it is definitely there. The insects are in the shape of an ordinary food colouring named cochineal extract, carmine, or carmines acid. The reddish color is derived from the insect known as Dactylopius Coccus Costa, whose diet is of red cactus berries. The bugs are dried up and then ground into a fine powder that is used in a lot of processed foods with a pink, red or purple tint.

The Strawberry flavour Contains 50 Different Chemicals.

Image
In order to copy the flavour of a strawberry, fast food corporations include 50 distinct chemicals like ethyl acetate, phenythyl alcohol, rose & solvent. So, the next time you get a craving for a strawberry milkshake, take a minute to remember the ingredients.

Food Facts : What is the Largest Food Item on any Menu?

Image
The largest food item on a menu is the roast camel.

The camel is stuffed with a sheep’s carcass, which is stuffed with chickens, which are stuffed with fish, which are stuffed with eggs. This feast is sometimes featured in Bedouin weddings.

Food Facts : How many times are refried beans fried?

Image
Refried beans are only fried once.

The reason for this misconception is a translation error. The originals are frijoles refritos which actually means “well fried beans” – not re-fried.

Grilled chicken sandwiches & salads on fast food menus, might contain beef.

Image
For example chicken McNuggets contain several beef additives disguised generally with secret names like “extract” or “essence”. Current offenders include Wendy’s Grilled Chicken Sandwich and KFC’s Grilled Chicken Sandwich.

FESTIVALS IN JAPAN - Oct 10

Image
Kusajishi-shiki, the Japanese archery ritual at Yasukuni Shrine, Kudan, Chiyoda-ku, is held twice from 11 a.m. and from 1:30 p.m., each lasting for about 40 minutes. The archers dressed in ceremonial robes shoot arrows at the targets (figures of a deer) according to traditional rites. In the event of rain, the ritual will be held in Nohgakudo Hall in the precincts.

Fast Food Facts - French Fries

Image
Most fast food chains dip their French fries in sugar to give them that deliciously golden brown hue after frying .

What many of us don’t realize is that some fast food fries aren’t just fatty and starchy. They are also sugary as well.

While they don’t taste very sweet, the sugars are added for other incentives. It also helps to develop that nice outer crispiness that can be complicated to imitate when frying at home.

What Steve Jobs is doing now ....

Image

IN HONOUR OF STEVE JOBS. RIP

Image

FESTIVALS IN JAPAN - Oct 6 - 8

Image
Shirotorijinja Shuki Taisai 白鳥神社秋季大祭
This tiger Shishimai, known as Toragashiranomai, is unusual for its Kabuki elements. Where's it at :
69 Matsubara, Higashikagawa-shi, Kagawa-ken

Health Tip

Image
"Dip your bread in extra virgin olive oil instead of mayonnaise or butter and get a good dose of healthy fats instead of unhealthy ones."

The apple - Boost your brain power with a common almost forgotten fruit

Image
Tuesday, October 04, 2011 by: Paul Fassa

The outdated apple a day keeps the doctor away adage has been replaced with fresh apple juice three times a week. This new routine was discovered after a ten-year study determined it helped Alzheimer's patients by greatly reducing the chance of Alzheimer's disease (AD) from even occurring. Another study uncovered heart health benefits. The benefits Dr. Thomas Shea, a neurobiologist, and his research team at the University of Massachusetts topped off years of studying apples' effects on brain health. They used test tubes, Petri dishes, and mice for years. Then recently, they confirmed their findings with a human clinical trial. Twenty-one AD patients from ages 72 to 93 were fed four ounces of apple juice twice daily for thirty days. There were improvements with memory as well as the negative emotional moods normally associated with AD victims. He concluded that by drinking apple juice only three times per week, you would reduce your chanc…

FESTIVALS IN JAPAN - Oct 4 - 5

Image
Kamikamogawa Sumiyoshijinja 「shinjimai」 上鴨川住吉神社「神事舞」 Shishimai and sword-wielding Tachimai dances harken back to the performance arts of Japan's medieval period. Where's it at : Kamikamogawa, Katou-shi, Hyogo-ken, Japan

Denmark introduces world's first food fat tax!

Denmark has introduced what is believed to be the world's first fat tax - a surcharge on foods that are high in saturated fat.

Mind-altering microbes: Probiotic bacteria may lessen anxiety and depression

Image
Link to article on Science Daily :  Mind-altering microbes: Probiotic bacteria may lessen anxiety and depression

Take a look at some of the Processes in Making Premium Probiotics here.

FESTIVALS IN JAPAN - Oct 2 -3

Image
Hoko Hachimangu Reitaisai 鉾八幡宮例大祭 This parade festival bustles with its colorful masked Shishimai dancing, bold Chosa drum floats, and costumed children. Where's it at : 2336 Saita-cho Saitakami, Mitoyo-shi, Kagawa-ken

No Joke: Laughter IS the best medicine

Image
Researchers in Norway surveyed 54,000 people & found that a sense of humour can extend life for those who are sick.

Those that had cancer & a sense of humor were 70% more likely to survive than their counterparts with little or no sense of humour.

Laughter - It won't cost you anything but it can prolong your life!