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Volume 10 Issue 4
November/December 2004

Ganoderma: God's Herb
Reishi Mushroom Medicine

Raving About Raw Seeds!

Fair Trade
A Marketplace Where Everyone Wins

Humour and Hope
A Process for Healing ©2004

Healthy Vision Habits
Give Your Eyes A Break

Editorial

Archives


Volume 10 Issue 4 — November/December 2004

Ganoderma: God's Herb
Reishi Mushroom Medicine

by Rob Roy

Ganoderma lucidum, or Reishi mushroom (Ling Zhi, in Chinese), has been used for over 4,500 years in Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). It is believed to be the oldest mushroom used as medicine and is one of the most respected medicinal mushrooms today. Once rare and expensive, Ganoderma lucidum (referred to as Ganoderma from now on) is now effectively cultivated and is readily available. Around 5,000 years ago a man named Shen Nung, now the Father of Chinese Traditional Medicine, devoted his life to doing an extraordinary thing. He personally tested hundreds of plants, roots, fungi, and herbs for their efficacy as medicines, laying the foundation for a tradition of therapeutic observation spanning 2,000 years in China. The sheer quantity of this experiential knowledge gave birth to practices and sciences from which we still benefit today, i.e., acupuncture, qi gong (chi kung), etc. It also led to the world’s first pharmacopoeia, the “Shen Nung Pen Ts’ao Ching,” written 2,500 years ago. In it, 365 medicines were finally classified into three groups: fair, average, and superior. The superior medicines acquired this designation because it was shown repeatedly that they served to “maintain life, promote radiant health and long life, and cause no side effects even when taken continuously". (Ginseng is a good example of a superior herb.)

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Raving About Raw Seeds!
by Paulette Millis

Raw seeds, like raw nuts, are brain food. The unsaturated fat they contain is essential for brain function. Udo Erasmus says the brain is 60 percent fat! Could we say we are all "fatheads"? Sunflower, pumpkin, hemp, and sesame seeds are some of the richest foods in nutritional value. They perform the same function as grains in that they are responsible for the reproduction of the species. They embody the life principle and the nutrients to support the generation of life, although they don’t contain the perfect balance of nutrients as grain does, being higher in protein and unsaturated fat.

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Fair Trade
A Marketplace Where Everyone Wins

by Nancy Allan

What is Fair Trade? Fair trade gifts give twice, to quote an old saying: once to the recipient and once to the people who made them. While most WHOLifE readers don’t need to be persuaded about the virtue of organics, perhaps not everyone is familiar with the ideas behind fair trade and how both consumers and producers can benefit. Fair trade-certified products, from sugar to crafts to soccer balls, are created under conditions that acknowledge producers’ and workers’ rights to fair payment for their labour, offer partial advance payment to cover producers’ up-front costs, and involve multi-year contracts to allow for better planning. In the case of coffee, fair trade guarantees producers a basic price of US$1.26 (Cdn$1.60) a pound, more than double the world price as of September, 2004. It is obvious why small farmers, who are the majority of the world’s coffee producers, would like to be involved in the fair trade marketplace.

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Humour and Hope
A Process for Healing ©2004

by Cathy Fenwick ©2004

For most of my life I have dreamed about writing a book, “some day, when I’m retired from my job and my children are grown”. After the cancer diagnosis (in 1990) I thought, “Why wait, I may not live that long!” I began to write articles and speak publicly about my experience with cancer and about my incredible healing journey. These were the beginnings of the first edition of Healing With Humour. To date I have published two books and am working on a third. I continue to set long-term goals, with reasonable expectations of achieving them; while at the same time, accepting with serenity and peace whatever happens. I am amazed by the number of good things that have emerged in these last several years!

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Healthy Vision Habits
Give Your Eyes A Break

by Elizabeth Abraham

Our eyes, like every other part of our body, function better or worse depending on how we use them. But what are we taught about how to use our eyes? Virtually nothing. All we know is that when we complain of blurry vision – whether we are 8 or 80 – we are given glasses. When we can no longer see as clearly through those glasses, we are given a stronger pair. Glasses compensate for the fact that our vision is blurry, but do nothing to change the reason why we stopped seeing clearly in the first place. We need to learn how to use our eyes well so that they can function well. What do our eyes need? Our eyes function better when they are relaxed and moving than when they are strained and fixated. Here are a few things you can do to develop good vision habits during your daily life, whether or not you use glasses.

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Editorial
by Melva Armstrong

The first big snowfall is upon us as I write these words. Each autumn I hope that the snow will hold off until late December but most times it doesn't and then the winter can seem very long. I just came back from my walk and the icy snow was crunchy under my feet and my black fleece jacket was catching the flakes as they fell from the sky. I had to quickly blink my eyes as the flakes were lightly flying into them and melting as they touched the warmth of my eyelids—a rather lovely feeling. Thankfully the temperatures are still warm enough that my face wasn't freezing. I am grateful for my walks as they always help keep me in touch with Mother Nature, which is part of that precious balance I like to have in my life in order to maintain good health and happiness. I hope all of you are finding that important balance in your lives too, so you can live each day being healthy and happy.

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Plus:

Gratitude: Counting One's Blessings
Natural Reflections: Obesity – An Alarming Trend to Consider
News of Note
From Our Readers

 

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